Senior pilgrims visit Jerusalem

March 30, 2023

For over a decade, Berkeley Divinity School’s senior class has gone on a pilgrimage over Spring break. With the exception of 2015 (when the seniors went to Rome) and the two-year hiatus during the pandemic, this capstone experience has been to Canterbury, home of Anglicanism’s mother Church. Beginning this year, Berkeley is focusing on the experiencing the diversity of expressions and cultural contexts for Anglicanism, and understanding Anglican traditions in the context of religiously diverse communities. 

The inaugural pilgrimage this year took Berkeley seniors to Jerusalem, the holy city of three faith traditions and the Anglican home of St. George’s Cathedral and St. George’s College. Dean Andrew McGowan joined the Rev. Canon Nicholas Porter ’94 in leading a five-day journey that included sacred Christian sites such as Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Garden of Gethsemane. They also visited ancient sites in the Judean Wilderness, from the Jordan Baptismal Site to Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. In a forum led by Anglican Archbishop Hosam Naoum, the Berkeley pilgrims learned about the challenges of life in a multi-faith community, and a visit to the Yad Vashem museum gave students deep insights into the Holocaust and modern-day Israel.