After an early departure and an inspiring scripture study on the bus (Drew, Bella, Mindi and I) we made our way to Natanya Academic College where we were taught by the Israeli professor and Rabbi David Altman. Some of the insights shared-Orson Hyde was the first modern “Zionist” and a square was made to honor the brotherhood between Mormons and Jews. Palm trees from the tribe of Mannasseh were planted for each of the followers of Orson Hyde and olive trees from the tribe of Ephraim area were planted for each of the presidents of our church.
In a touching speech David Altman shared with us – “I am your brother”
“Nothing is by accident; everything is planned”.
“Today we are exposed to hatred but we come together. No people are connected to the land like those of Israel- everyone of you will remember the first day you set foot in Israel. Welcome home. You are part of the prophecies. Welcome home brothers.”
“Truth doesn’t need an explanation. “
Rabbi David Altman
On an earlier trip to Israel Mike and I had taken an evening walk to Joppa (Jaffa) but I hadn’t strolled through the town during the day. I loved thinking of Simon Peter lodging there and of Jonah running there to hide from God. Once again we put our toes in the Mediterranean Sea and then we had the best fresh fruit smoothies I have had in a long time!!! I ordered two!
Our last stop was the Biblical Gardens which had been a highlight for us before. Unfortunately our tour was cut short due to a late arrival so I was disappointed. They talked about the importance of water and bread and threshing and olives and grapes and it just seemed as if everything was symbolic of the Savior.