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Immerse Yourself In Purity On The Jordan River Shore

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Duck calls in old eucalyptus groves, historical hotbeds of socialism and stunning spur-winged plovers await Yardenit visitors

Flowing out of the southwest corner of the Sea of Galilee, the Jordan River has come to symbolize ritual purity and holiness.

This belief dates back to the works of John the Baptist, whose followers “went out to him from Jerusalem and all Judea and the whole region of the Jordan. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River” (Matt 3:5-6).

John is also believed to have immersed his cousin Jesus of Nazareth in the Jordan River, somewhere between Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea.

The traditional site of Jesus’ baptism (Katzer El Yehud) is located near Jericho at the point where the Israelites crossed into the Promised Land. Until very recently, security considerations made it out of bounds to civilians.

Thus, for decades, the Yardenit Baptismal Site near Kibbutz Kinneret became a focal point for hundreds of thousands of modern pilgrims.

Dressed in white, they slowly submerge themselves in the water as their religious leader offers up a prayer.

While a relatively simple site until the year 2000, today Yardenit boasts a large stone Visitors’ Center with a souvenir shop, restaurant, and several baptismal areas. Popular gift items include bottles of holy water: three for ten dollars.

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Read the full article over at The Times of Israel

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