Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Moving 3 buses around is always a challenge but it’s going as smooth as silk and everyone is very happy. We are covering all the bases and doing it was great organization and joy!

Today we started out with Mass and talks at Gethsemane. This is always a very moving place for people. From there to the top of the Mount of Olives to the place where Jesus taught the disciples to pray the Our Father. Also the place he ascended into heaven.

Lunch at a kibbutz and then to the high lookout promenade overlooking  Jerusalem for my talk “The Story of Salvation from Adam and Eve until Today.“ Mount Zion was next for the Upper Room and Church of Dormition. Most of our group lined up and entered the empty tomb of the Holy Sepulchre. Some free time and dinner at the hotel.

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By Susan Wills:

George Santayana’s famous statement — “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” — would be a great subtitle for a little known essay called “The Fate of Empires” (1976) by the little known British general and historian Sir John Bagot Glubb.

He explains that we generally fail to learn vital lessons from humanity’s past errors because history is taught in disconnected chunks, narrowly focused on this region or that era and almost never as a comprehensive study of the history of humanity. Plus historians, like the rest of humanity, are not above lying to burnish their nation’s history and tarnish the memory of ancient foes. 

Sir John Glubb confined his analysis of superpowers to the 3,000-year history of the Middle East and Europe — from Great Britain to Russia — where his knowledge was broad and deep, conceding that he was not an expert in the history of the Far East or of South America. In comparing the rise and fall of the eleven great empires that flourished between 859 B.C. and 1950 A.D., he uncovered a pattern of conquest, growth, maturity and decline that, remarkably, was common to all.

What surprised him even more: for each superpower, the whole process took place over ten generations or roughly 250 years. He saw the same trajectory being repeated in the United States of America. The most pressing question we now face is this: Can the values and habits that made America a great nation be restored or is its collapse — within the next 25 years — inevitable?

Seven ages can be identified in US history and in the histories of eleven past superpowers (Assyria, Persia, Greece, the Roman Republic, the Roman Empire, Arab Empire, Mameluke Empire, Ottoman Empire, Spain, Romanov Russia and Great Britain). The Age of — 

(1) Pioneers (“The Age of Outburst”)
(2) Conquest
(3) Commerce
(4) Affluence
(5) Intellect
(6) Decadence
(7) Decline and Death

We sometimes think of pioneers and conquerors as “barbarians,” like the Mongolians who conquered Persia or the Germanic tribes who sacked Rome, and assume that they conquered “effete civilizations.” But that’s not always the case.

For example, the pioneers in what became the US subdued “less advanced” tribal groups, but still fit the arc. Sir John describes pioneers as “normally poor, hardy and enterprising and above all aggressive”; “they abound in courage, energy and initiative, overcome every obstacle and always seem to be in control of the situation.”

For the whole insightful article click here.

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This sign confronts everyone entering the Carmelite Monastery Church of St. Joseph. This was the 1st convent started by St. Teresa of Avila.

Don’t you wish it was on every church door in America?   :-)

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