While shepherds watched their flocks

‘Birth’ was the theme of our first day, and we travelled to Bethlehem (in Palestine through a control point at ‘the wall’) to the Shepherd’s Fields looking up to Bethlehem.

I was privileged to celebrate the first Mass for the conference, using an Australian service from A Prayer Book for Australia, in a grotto on the fields.

Yes, that’s me (below) coming out of the sacristy. Someone will have a better photo in due course. I had to proceed around Bethlehem for the rest of the day, the only one in a clergy shirt. Lots of recognition from the many Christians in Palestine (about 30% of the population of Bethlehem).

 There was a little bit of shopping at a Christian shop, a lovely icon for St George’s Chapel, then on to lunch at The Tent, a festive open-air restaurant with fabulous and filling Palestinian food.


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