Jordan Pre-trip to Israel Pilgrimage – Feb 2019

09 February 2019 to 14 February 2019



Everyone Arrived Enthusiastically in Amman Jordan, Ready to Discover this Biblical Land

Everyone arrived safely and in good spirits with no glitches at the beautiful and modern Queen Alia Airport in Amman Jordan. We are excited to show these excited pilgrims our favorite biblical and Catholic sites in this amazing country.

In 2000 Pope St. John Paul II designated five sites as pilgrimage sites. We will visit all five of them and much more over the next four days. Glad you can join us by video!!

Jordan Day 2 Northern Mountains, Anjara, Elijah’s Birthplace, Jerash, Jabbok River and more

After a good nights sleep everybody is fresh and ready to go. We start by heading north for an hour and a half up into the mountains of Jordan. At this point we’re only a short drive across the border to the sea of Galilee and then Israel.

We start at one of the five pilgrimage sites designated by St. John Paul II. We have Mass at Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church in Anjara (Fr. Dan’s excellent homily here) before driving to Mar Elias (Tishbe) which is the birthplace of Elijah the prophet (1 Kings 17:1). We stoped at a wonderful restaurant for lunch and watched more fresh bread being baked outside in a huge domed oven.

Next to one of the most well preserved ancient Roman cities called Jerash which is mentioned in the gospels as Gerasa (Luke 8:37). On our way back to Amman we visit the Jabbok River  where I tell the story of Jacob the supplanter  and deceiver. It was at this river that he was renamed Israel after wrestling all night with God (Gen 32:24-32).

Steve Ray tells story of Jacob the Conniver

Mount Nebo and Moses’ Death, John the Baptist’s Beheading at Fortress Macherus and more

A fantastic 2nd day. We started out at Mount Nebo where the children of Israel looked over into the Promised Land for the first time in over 440 years. It was here that Moses was denied entrance and died. What a wonderful Mass here celebrating St. Moses. Homily here

We visited a mosaic factory and learned the fine art of mosaics and then saw the ancient Madaba map which is the mosaic floor of an ancient church. A great homemade lunch and then to King Herod’s Fortress of Macherus where John the Baptist was imprisoned and beheaded.

Then a long ride down to Petra with good conversation and friends and a couple stops along the way. We arrived in Petra in time to check in at the beautiful Marriott Hotel and have a nice dinner.

Steve’s talk about Moses at Mount Nebo where he died.

Steve’s talk at Herod’s Fotress of Macherus about the beheading of John the Baptist for political reasons and his defense of marriage. On location talk here

Jordan Day 4: Amazing Petra!

Pictures can never portray the beauty and magnificence of the World Heritage Site and one of the Wonders of the World—PETRA!

It is also a biblical city, not because it’s mentioned in the Bible, but because of its historical significance related possibly to several people and events in the Bible including Moses and St. Paul. The Nabatean kings of Petra, Aretas I and Aretas IV, are both mentioned in the Bible.

After our stunning and amazing tour of Petra with camel rides and the lot, we drove back up north for Mass at one of my favorite churches called of the Marian Peace Center. Fr. Dan’s homily here. The biblical paintings of the Holy Land in this are fantastic.

Authentic Jordanian dinner called “Upside Down” at our guide Elias’ Restaurant.Dancing, oh my! Overnight in Madaba.




Dancing in Madaba

Jordan 5: Authentic Baptismal Site of Jesus, Mass on the River, North thru Jordan, Crossing into Israel

Today we visited the queen of the pilgrimage sites in Jordan and the 5th and final one. We drove down from the mountains of Amman and Madaba to the lowest place on the face of the earth which is the Jordan Valley. It is 1,250 feet below sea level. We arrived at the Jordan River and celebtated Mass among the reeds with even a muskrat joining us. You can hear/see Fr. Dan‘s homily here.

We also renewed our baptismal vows at the River and I did a short talk entitled “Are You Born Again?“ we toured the authentic sign of Jesus‘s baptism and the archaeological site surrounding it. We also saw the spot where Elijah was taken I’ve been to heaven.

We had a nice bag lunch as we drove an hour and a half north along the Jordan River in Jordan to the Sheikh Hussein Crossing into Israel. After crossing into Israel we arrived at our Ron Beach Hotel and settled in and enjoyed the afternoon.

Some people swim in the sea of Galilee and others just sat along the shore reading the Gospels and enjoying some down time to rest. Others took a well-deserved nap. Our Israel-only Group joined us later in the evening (separate video).

About the Pilgrimage

Watch the full length video of this pilgrimage below or download it here.

Footprints of God Jordan Pilgrimage February 2019 from Steve Ray on Vimeo.

Come, meet Jesus on Jordan’s bank

Come, meet Jesus on Jordan’s bank–Visiting #HolyJordan, you walk in the footsteps of Joshua, Elijah, John the Baptist, and Christ Himself. READ MORE:

Posted by Aleteia English on Friday, September 1, 2017

** Click on audio button bottom right for sound.

Below you can watch the 1 hour video from our 2017 Jordan pilgrimage below.

Above: Jordan Pilgrimage February 2018 from Steve Ray on Vimeo.

See Holy Land main trip here.


Click here for Jordan’s Official booklet “A Guide to Religion and Faith in Jordan.”

Contact Elizabeth or Kendall for pricing on this pre-extension to our Holy Land pilgrimage. They can be reached at 800-727-1999 or at or