In the Footsteps of Jesus With Fr. Matt Gerlach

Advent Pilgrimage to the Holy Land

In the Footsteps of Jesus
With Fr. Matt Gerlach

Monday, November 26, 2018 – Wednesday, December 5, 2018
$3799.00 /round trip Tulsa- Double Occupancy
(subject to change with air taxes)

Download Brochure and Application


Monday Nov 26: DEPART USA

Board your flight for the start of your journey to Tel Aviv, with complimentary meals and beverages served on board.


Upon arrival in Tel Aviv, you will be met and transferred to your hotel in Jerusalem. Dinner will be served at the hotel.

Theme: The Visitation and Nativity

Begin the day with a visit to the Second Temple scale model for an overview of Jerusalem as it was at the time of Jesus. Also see the Shrine of the Book, where the Dead Sea Scrolls are housed. A short drive takes us to the village of Ein Karem, the birthplace of John the Baptist, to visit the church that commemorates his memory. Pray the Rosary on the walk up the hill to the Church of the Visitation.

Next, we go to Bethlehem, beginning at Manger Square, which stands in front of one of the oldest of Christian churches, the Church of the Nativity. Enter the Church and down to the Grotto of the Nativity, which marks the spot of Jesus’ birth. Beneath the altar, there is a silver star with the Latin inscription: HIC DE VIRGINE MARIA JESUS CHRISTUS NATUS (Here Jesus Christ was born to the Virgin Mary). Nearby is the Milk Grotto and then we go to the cave at the Shepherds’ Field. The caves have soot marks of the fires that shepherds lit to keep warm while watching over their flocks.

Theme: Early Years in Jerusalem & the Wilderness

Start the day with a visit to Masada to see the fortress that Herod built. Here the Jewish zealots who rebelled against Roman rule held out for two years before deciding to commit suicide rather than enter slavery. Then drive up the Jordan Valley to Qumran where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found. Drive through the Judean Wilderness where Jesus spent 40 days fasting. Stop at Jericho, the world’s oldest continuously inhabited city, to view the Mount of Temptation and see an example of a Sycamore tree and Elijah’s Spring. End the day at Bethany where Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. Celebrate Mass here before returning to the hotel.

Theme: Palm Sunday and the Agony in the Garden

From the Mount of Olives, take in the panoramic view of Jerusalem and visit the site of the Ascension and Bethphage. Walking down the Palm Sunday Road, stop at the beautiful little church, Dominus Flevit – “The Lord wept.” It was here that Jesus wept over Jerusalem [Luke 19:41]. At Gethsemane reflect on Jesus’ final night. The Garden contains trees, the roots of which go back to the time of Jesus. Visit the Church of All Nations to pray at the “Rock of Agony,” a section of bedrock identified as the place where Jesus prayed alone in the garden on the night of His arrest.

From there, take the route through the Kidron Valley along which Jesus was taken as a prisoner to the house of the High Priest Caiaphas where He was interrogated and imprisoned. Now called Peter in Gallicantu (“crowing rooster”), this beautiful Church also commemorates Peter’s denial of Christ, his repentance, and then being forgiven by Jesus. Here we celebrate Mass. After Mass, go up to Mount Zion to visit the Upper Room, commemorating the Last Supper. Nearby is the Benedictine Church of the Dormition and the Tomb of David.

Saturday Dec 1: JERUSALEM: VIA DOLOROSA, HOLY SEPULCHRE Theme: The Way of the Cross, The Crucifixion, The Resurrection

This morning we start the Via Dolorosa (The Way of the Cross) at the Antonia Fortress, where Jesus was condemned to death by Pontius Pilate. From there He was taken through the city to be crucified. The Stations of the Cross lead through the markets of the Old City to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Here is the site of Calvary and the Tomb of Christ. Celebrate Mass at the Tomb in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

In the afternoon go to the steps of the Southern Wall of the Temple Mount to ponder the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple, the finding of Jesus at the Temple, and the healing of the blind man at the Temple. See the Western Wall of the Temple Mount and view the Dome of the Rock. Walk to see the Church of St. Anne and the Pool of Bethesda.

Sunday Dec 2: NAZARETH, CANA
Theme: The Annunciation

This morning after breakfast, drive to Nazareth, the site of Mary’s home and the town where Jesus lived as a child. At Nazareth, celebrate Mass in the Basilica of the Annunciation, built over the Grotto of the Annunciation. Visit the Byzantine Church of St. Joseph and Mary’s well. In the afternoon visit Cana, where Jesus performed His first miracle at the request of His mother [John 2:1-11]. There visit the Franciscan chapel where those who wish can renew their wedding vows. Continue to the Sea of Galilee to check-in to your hotel.

Theme: The Ministry of Christ in the Galilee

The day starts with a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. Next, visit the excavations at Magdala and on to the Mount of Beatitudes, the scene of Jesus’ great Sermon on the Mount. Visit Tabgha, where Jesus fed the crowd of 5,000. Close to here is the site known as Peter’s Primacy. Here, after His resurrection, Jesus met with His disciples and told Peter to “feed my lambs; feed my sheep.” [John 21:9]. A short drive away is Capernaum, from where Jesus launched his Ministry; see the synagogue which dates to the time of Jesus and the church built over the site of Peter’s home. Celebrate Mass in this special place. Enjoy a lunch of St Peter Fish, and in the afternoon drive up to Caesarea Philippi, where Jesus told St. Peter “You are the rock, and upon this rock I will build my Church.” End the day at the spot where the Jordan River flows from the Sea of Galilee with time to renew our baptismal promises. Dinner and overnight at your hotel.

Theme: The Transfiguration

After breakfast we drive to Mount Tabor, the site of the Transfiguration, with time to reflect on Christ’s Humanity and Divinity. Mass will be at the Basilica here designed to represent three tents. Continue to Haifa to visit Stella Maris, a Carmelite Monastery with the Madonna of Mt Carmel. After enjoying the view of the bay of Acco, leave for Caesarea Maritima, which was once the ancient capital of the Roman province. View the impressive archaeological remains of the Roman and Byzantine city that once dominated the region. It was at Caesarea that Peter came to understand that the Good News was not for Jews only, but for the whole world. Here he baptized the Roman Centurion Cornelius and his family.   It was from Caesarea that Paul set sail for Rome, an event that eventually brought Christianity to the World. Overnight in the Tel Aviv area.

Wednesday Dec 5: DEPARTURE
Transfer to airport for the flight home.


Note: The above itinerary is intended for illustrative purposes. The sequence and timing of visits to sites each day may change because of local conditions, such as traffic, local feast, road closures and congestion. The time and location of Mass each day is subject to local church schedules and may be changed to a location and time of day other than that listed in the itinerary.



Nov 27-Dec 02           Notre Dame – Jerusalem                     Advent Pilgrimage to the Holy Land flyer5 nights
Dec 02-04                   Ron Beach – Tiberias                            2 nights
Dec 04-05                   Kfar Maccabieh – Ramat Gan           1 night

Cost Includes:

  • 8 night’s hotel accommodation in Twin share
  • HB: Buffet Breakfast & Buffet Dinner at hotel from Dinner on Nov 27 to breakfast on Dec 05.
  • 1 Lunch at local restaurant
  • Transport by deluxe air-conditioned motor coach.
  • All guiding and entrance fees as per itinerary.
  • Sightseeing as per our itinerary.
  • Porterage fee at hotels.
  • Headsets in Israel
  • Mineral water day on bus.
Cost Excludes:
  • Departure tax is usually included with Air Fares
  • Israel visa gratis for USA passport holders
  • Personal items and drinks with meals
  • All tips and gratuities
  • Tips to porters
  • Lunches not mentioned above
  • Single room supplement of $899.00

All government taxes and visa fees are subject to change without notice.