Cana – The Wedding Church

This is a church which is meant to be on the site of where Jesus did his first miracle.

In fact this place is popular for Christians to get married today.

This path has a rock in the way to stop cars coming up here, but its a path outside the wedding church.   So you imagine people waiting outside for service to start with their big hats on maybe….

The green tiles have some scriptures on, albeit some have broken off.

The church’s main area isn’t huge, so probably get upto 70-80 people maybe.

Good place for bar or tables full of sandwiches I reckon.

Above and left you can see some mosaic that was dug up underneath this church.  There is some text written in Aramaic, a language spoke to by Jesus popular as well as Hebrew.

This appears to be uncovered foundations of the original structure here.   There is money people have thrown down.   Not sure if this was encouraged by the church or something for luck perhaps.

In John 2 : 1-12 On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”   “Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.”   His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”    Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.   Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.   Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.”   They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”   What Jesus did here in Cana of Galilee was the first of the signs through which he revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.   After this he went down to Capernaum with his mother and brothers and his disciples. There they stayed for a few days.

What has made me wonder lately, is Jesus did some of his miracles to heal the sick and raise the dead, and to prove a point, this was his first miracle.   In later times Jesus healed someone and told them not to tell anyone, such as Jairus’s daughter. Luke 8 : 49-53  I know two couples are getting married at my home church this month, it would be interesting hearing the groom’s speech from 2000 years ago if he gave Jesus credit for the wine 🙂

Could be a nice place to sit outside for a wedding reception.  Heck you could easily rig up a disco ball on this wooden roof 🙂

Here I spent less than hour looking around and then one of the nuns who I think was Italian who lives in house in the grounds told me they were closing up.   Some people on the way out were disappointed it was shut, but it was re-opening a bit later in the day.  I headed back to the main town centre and got a bus back to Nazareth.

Cana –  The High StreetCana –  The Wedding ChurchNazarethMegiddo

Cana – High Street

Cana’s main high street.  Like Nazareth, Jaffa and Akko, Cana is an Arab Israeli city, I don’t think any Jews live in this place, although the Galilee area is dotted with alternating Jewish and Arab places.

Getting here from Nazareth is easy from Nazareth, only a 6 shekel (£1) ride on a Sherut bus taking about 15 minutes or so.

Cana is also known as Kafr Kanna, due different spellings of Hebrew or Arabic names when you ‘Latinize’ them.   There is also a city called Qana in Lebanon also thought by some where Jesus did the miracle of the water into wine at a wedding.   Population is 17,000 people as of 2005, 83% Muslim and 16% Christian.

Brightly coloured pictures, often with guilded frames of images of Jesus, Mary and disciples are popular in churches I have seen all around the holy land.

They are not to everyone’s taste maybe, but all kinds of decorations are popular in middle east, especially looking at the beautiful coloured fabrics made by Arabs and Sephardic (ie: from other parts of the middle east or north Africa) Jews.   I actually think a lot of the artwork in these gift shops is actually quite nice.

A lot of the gift shop sell wine, the Galilee’s vineyards produce a lot of wine in this country, and you find plenty in shops around here.  Did also see a few bottles of French wine as well though.

This store had samples to give away here for people to try.

Around the town, I only spent one day here, but just before I headed back on the bus, I caught a glimpse of this arch across the street…

I also visited a church thought to be where Jesus was a guest at a wedding…

Cana –  The High StreetCana –  The Wedding ChurchNazarethMegiddo

Nazareth – 1. Arrival at the city

I have always hoped Michael Palin could do journals around the holy land one day, until this happens I try and blog on the places of the life of Jesus myself.  I am tired by the attitudes of the media and fellow Brits who try to slander Israel and accuse it of being a ‘Apartheid’ state amongst other things.  I set out to the central Galilee city of Nazareth, to see what it was like for Jesus to have grown up there, glimpses of places from the bible, how the Arab people there live in the centre of the Galilee and how different it is from Jerusalem.

Just before getting off the bus which took me from Jerusalem, I asked some people next to me if this was the right place to get off, and there didn’t seem to be a proper bus station, just a stop by the main road.   This Arab couple were really friendly and were happy oblige to walk with me from the street through some narrow streets uphill through the old city towards my hostel.

Jesus frequently went to and fro from here or the greater part of Galilee to Jerusalem and Bethlehem.  When you live some distance from your family this must be a lot of effort to travel often.

This provocative message to Christians stands out a junction heading north towards the Synagogue where Jesus first preached.  Behind is the tall turret of the famous huge and grand looking Bisilica Church.   It says “and whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted of him, and in the hereafter he will be one of the losers. – Holy Quran”

I have a better message though: Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14 : 6

I have seen this on some guides before, and all the research I did suggested Nazareth is a safe city to visit, and it is too.  I had a number of worries though to do with the busy time of year.  I booked this trip at rather the last minute as its in between Pesach and Easter, and with two different holidays, the buses are not running for some of those days, Easter making it more busy for Christian visitors, and I had hoped to visit Tiberias but both youth hostels were fully booked, so was one of the main hostels in Nazareth, and I got myself one night booked but not for the other days, this needed a lot of prayer of exactly how to figure out where to stay….

Soon!  Different Youth Hostels, the Spice Mill, Thousands of Arab Israelis Christians in the streets at Easter, the church at Cana for weddings, today’s modern Nazarene carpenters and residents finding hidden wells in the back yards by accident!

1. Arrival at the city2. Staying in the old city3. The modern day Nazarene carpenter4. Where Jesus first preached5. Religious vehicles in Nazareth6. Mary’s Well and the Bath house7. The precipice8. On top of the Precipice hill9. More old city streets and market10. The spice shop11. Churches from A to Z or Alpha to Omega12. The Basilica church13. Easter service at the Basilica

Galilee road trip part 3 : Miracles of Jesus on location

Parts 1 2 3 – more soon…

Back to continue the camping trip I did in the Galilee in May.  The towns surrounding this lake are where Jesus spent most of his ministry.

With the aid of a few supplies we took on our expedition, I decided to do some photos to recreate some of the miracles the Lord did on this very place.

Water into Wine.   As mentioned in John 2 : 9.  Jesus did this at a wedding in Cana which is a town some distance away from the west side of the sea, although I am the east side.

The sea and the coast can look quite foggy at times. The places where we camped has this amazing view, this wall is great to sit on and view until the sun goes down.

Five loaves and two fishes.  I have used some tinned pilchards, as I think using fresh fish in a car with 5 people and loaded with other stuff on a hot day would not be very a popular.

The scriptures here mention this was done by Jesus in a place called Gennesaret on the north west of the sea.  Check Matthew 14.

This sign is famous for its comedy value, I saw this is a park in a far up north part of Israel.  Some of my friends said they had seen this in national parks in other parts of the country.

The middle symbol looks like its saying ‘No walking on water’!

Parts 1 2 3 – more soon…