(Wash. Post) Pope picks one of dueling baptism sites in visit to Holy Land

Christians believe that Jesus was immersed in the waters of the Jordan River by John the Baptist, who wore a cloak of camel’s hair and lived on locusts and honey in the desert wilderness.

But the Gospels are not precise about which side of the river the baptism took place on ”” the east bank or the west.

Although it might not matter much to a half-million annual visitors who come to the river for sightseeing or a renewal of faith, it matters very much to tourism officials in Israel and Jordan, who maintain dueling baptism sites, one smack-dab across from the other, with the shallow, narrow, muddy stream serving as international boundary.

Read it all.


Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Baptism, Foreign Relations, Inter-Faith Relations, Islam, Israel, Jordan, Judaism, Middle East, Other Churches, Other Faiths, Politics in General, Pope Francis, Roman Catholic, Sacramental Theology, Theology

2 comments on “(Wash. Post) Pope picks one of dueling baptism sites in visit to Holy Land

  1. Ralph says:

    The One True Baptismal Site is Yardenit, which has a website. They have locker rooms so you can change into the gowns and get baptized, or renew your vows. You can buy Official Jordan River water there, bring it home, and use it for baptizing the grandkids.

    I’ve heard that some place on the Sea of Galillee has some sort of bridge just under the water line, so you can walk out and get your picture taken walking on water. Gotta go there sometime.

  2. Br. Michael says:

    I have been there. Yardenit is right where the Yarden exits Lake Kinneret. I renewed my Baptismal Covenant (full immersion and all that) and that water was cold! At least my Southern Baptist relations don’t have anything on me now.

    As for the article there is a simple solution to the rivalry, if both sides were willing, and that would be to create a common site under combined Israeli and Jordanian control and split the profits. But alas things are never that easy.