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From fear to calm

Spiritual direction on stormy waters

Two years ago I traveled with a Jesuit friend to the Holy Land. The experience was overwhelming. When I first caught sight of the Sea of Galilee and saw its shimmering blue-green waters surrounded by pinkish sandy hills under a blazing sun, it was like a dream. One afternoon, after a full day of visiting sites around the lake, I found myself on the veranda of the Church of the Beatitudes at a Franciscan complex. The chapel overlooks the lake from an impressive height and gave me a commanding view of Galilee. To my left I could see the ruins of Capernaum, a mile or so from where I stood. Beyond that was Bethsaida, where Peter and Andrew lived. In front of me, across the sea, was the land of the Gerasenes, where Jesus healed a demoniac.

 

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