DAY ONE – We arrived in Israel!

by Steve Ray on March 11, 2007

Continental arrived around 10 AM and Lufthansa around 3:30 PM. Everyone arrived safe and sound. After unloading our luggage the travel-weary pilgrims ate a typical sumptuous dinner at the Nof Ginosar on the shore of the Sea of Galilee.

Then we boarded the buses and headed to the Primacy of St. Peter Church and held an outdoor Mass on the sea, under the stars. We had frogs singing to us, bats swooping around to keep the bugs away, and a gentle breeze.

Everyone got a good night sleep and we are off now to the Mountain of Transfiguration (Mount Tabor) which you can read about in Luke 9. Then we all renew wedding vows in Cana of Galilee (John 2) where Deacon Ray and his wife will celebrate 50 years of marriage. Then lunch on our way to Nazareth.

So, all your friends and family are fine and you will see them in the video — if not in this one, stay tuned throughout the pilgrimage. God bless you all. More later.


  • Joseph Gates says:

    WEll it’s good to hear everyone is safe and sound and yes I thought My mother and brother were crazy for going over. Please know that Sister Krystalyn and the rest of the Sisters of Mary Mother of the Eucharist are keeping you in their prayers as well as myself and the rest of the Men at St. John Vianney Seminary in St. Paul MN are keeping you in our prayers. Please give my love to Kim and William Gates and tell Fr. Ed I said Hello. Peace and Blessings in the Holy Land. May our Lady keep you safe and the Angel Guardian of the city of Jersualem guide you. -Joseph Gates-

  • Canice (Weber) Treangen says:

    I saw Mom and Dad! They looked happy and safe as you promised! I’m sure they will enjoy each spiritual adventure. Love you, Jerry and Lois Ann! The blog video is awesome, thank you!
    Love and Prayers,
    The Treangen family

  • The Lambert Family says:

    Hi Mom! Glad to hear you arrived safely! Hope you are having a great time!

    We miss you!!!

    Dan, The girls,& Andrew, Ben, & Abby!!

  • Mia Lawson says:

    Evan was very happy to see his Nana and Papa (Bill and Willy Lawson) on the video! Glad to see everyone arrived safely and will continue to check on your journey.

    Mia, Steve and Evan

  • Chuck Weber says:

    Thank you for posting the video…really nice. We look forward to more news and updates. Let us know if you need help keeping Jerry & Lois Ann Weber in line–we will threaten them with a visit from all their grandkids! (-:

    Peace be with you all.

  • RENO DJM'S says:

    Hornbuckle’s and Br. Allen
    It is exciting to see what you are experiencing. You are all in our prayers. Michele

  • Rosey says:

    For Barb Valentic……glad you arrived safely. Your journey probably seemed faster than our drive to the airport! Have a wonderful time and stay safe.

  • Message to: Reverend Mister James Atkinson and “Penny”,
    Happy to see you arrive safely. Itinery sounds great, AND Mass by the Sea of Galilee, WOW. We’ll join you tomorrow morning at 9:00am EDST Mass.
    Since your prayers are local calls, please keep Betsy in your prayers, she hurt back and shoulder (don’t know how bad for a few days or weeks). Father sounded good yesterday. Save wine from Cana

    Gerry and Paul

  • Shannon, Heather, King, Joe, Lance, Steve, Scott and Dooley says:

    Dear Amber and Jeff,

    WOW!!! You look like you are having an amazing time!
    Have fun and be sure to bring back some fantastic memories. We’ll make sure you are both staying out of trouble by watching the video clips. 🙂

    Love, Your Southern Core Family

  • Mary Penzien says:

    Judy and Joe, I haven’t seen your smiling faces yet on the video, but am so glad to know you arrived safely. I’m sure that you’ve already been blessed beyond measure! You’ve probably already run out of kleenex!
    Love and Peace,

  • John Hale says:

    Hello Steve & Janet, Teresa & Dom, Father and Father and all pilgrims:

    Thank you for the terrific updates, Steve. The video updates are a terrific addition. Can’t wait so see tomorrow’s.

    All of us at Corporate Travel are praying for each and every pilgrim to more deeply experience our Lord in these Holy sites.

    It has been a privilege to serve everyone on this pilgrimage.

  • Karen Blackwell says:

    We’re very grateful for the videos and daily updates so we can experience vicariously this wonderful pilgrimage! Love to Michele and Alan Hufnagel – be assured of our prayers!

  • The Vernau Family :o) says:

    Dear Penny and Deacon Jim Atkinson,
    This is your Vernau kidses! We are so happy to see you on video and to know what a great time you are having with Steve Ray!!! We are watching the blog and the maps and copies of Steve’s videos from Church!! Please pray for Jocelyn Sandstrom who is NEWLY pregnant and spotting. She was soo happy to hear you would pray for their first baby (five weeks so far).
    I meant to ask for prayers for JP Taylor, that Jesus would reveal himself to my sick little student.
    Love you

  • Mary Beth Vernau says:

    Hello Meems and Papa Atkinson!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I’m excited to see you guys on the world-wide web!!! That’s SOOO aewsome!! I know you are having the time of your lives, Meems and Papa!!!!! We love you and miss you!!!!!!! have an amazing trip and be SAFE!!!!!!!!!
    I’ll be thinking about you when we eat our corn beef and cabbage!!!!! :0)
    Have a good St.Patrick’s Day over there too!!!!!!!
    Much Love from your kickin’ and leapin’ grandaughter,
    Mary Beth (Lizzie Bee)

  • Dan Lambert says:

    Hu Pat & Karen,

    Glad to hear everyhing going well. The kids are keping me busy.


  • Mary Scerbo says:

    Hello Joan and Steve Chipman,
    I am traveling with you on your pilgrimage. I saw you at the Church of Annuciation through this blog.This is an awesome trip and I hope to walk with you along the way through this web site. Love and prayers to all of your traveling companions.

  • To Charlene and Joseph and all other saints on this journey. Please know that you are prayed for and we went to Mass for your new conversion and your safety….We’re following your trip with awe and expectation. Enjoy!

  • Patty Grifo says:

    To Irene Kearney, Heavenly Father keep these children of yours safe as they travel your Holy land. Irene, I hope to walk in your shoes one day. Have your memories ready for me when I see you this summer. Love you dearly, P

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