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Wendy Bumgardner

Walking the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem

By March 28, 2010

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Pilgrims carry a cross in JerusalemOne of the most ancient spiritual walking routes for Christians is the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem, Israel. It is a half mile walking route that follows the path of Jesus carrying the cross from the place of his sentencing to the hill where he was crucified.

Today, walking tours of Jerusalem will often include the Via Dolorosa. These photos trace the route we walked last week. Our tour guide, Elon, said that Jerusalem is a city of many religions, and the newest one is archaeology. The route of the Via Dolorosa is set by tradition rather than evidence. But the faithful today still use it as a walking spiritual exercise. On this Palm Sunday when the final days of Jesus are recounted in church, it gave me a new perspective to have come fresh from the ancient city where these events took place.

As a Catholic, I have often participated in praying the Stations of the Cross in church and walking outdoors paths lined with the Stations of the Cross. It is part of our spiritual walking tradition and is more common in my local churches than the labyrinth.
Photos of the Via Dolorosa - Stations of the Cross
Photo © Wendy Bumgardner 2010

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