Journey to Mt. Sinai and
St. Catherine's Monastery

Feb. 7-8, 2010

On Sunday afternoon we continued our journey to Mt. Sinai. Some of the group climbed it but we didn't because of Danielle's knee and the cold temperatures on the mountain. We did visit St. Catherine's Monastery at the foot of the mountain. The Greek Orthodox believe that St. Catherine was instantly transferred to the burning bush at this site when she was martyred.

For more information: Tour Egypt and Official site of the Monastery

Rock formations on way to Mt. Sinai The guide pointed out these rock structures on the way to Mt. Sinai. Unfortunately we forgot their significance. But since we like the picture, we are hoping someone will remind us what they are.
The hotels around Mt. Sinai
The hills around our "hotel" near Mt. Sinai.
Side of St. Catherine's Monastery
The side of St. Catherine's Monastery. (The front is shown on the index page.) Inside of the monastery there is a nice chapel but we were not allowed to take pictures in it.
Crosses in the Monestary wall Magnify
If you look carefully at the picture above, you may see 3 crosses left of the window, 1 to its right, and 3 more in the second rock row above it. There are at least 3 different styles of crosses. The view above is from the red rectangle in the left side of the picture on the right. Monestary wall with crosses
Some buildings inside the monestary Magnify
This pictures some of the buildings inside the monastery walls.

The burning bush Magnify

This is believed to be the burning bush where God instructed Moses to go back to Egypt and lead the Israelites out of that country (Exodus 3:1 - 4:17). It grows from a ledge just inside the monastery wall and hangs out over people. It keeps growing despite having people regularly breaking off small branches as they walk under it. Our guide told us that people have tried to take shoots from the plant and grow them elsewhere but they won't grow.
Part of the Monestary ourside its walls and hills behind it Magnify
Part of the Monastery outside its walls and hills behind it.
A golden calf?
While Moses was on the mountain getting the 10 commandments, the Israelites became impatient and asked Aaron to make an idol for them to worship. Aaron fashioned a golden calf from their jewelry and then an altar upon which the people made sacrifices. God was most unhappy with this. (Exodus 32.)

You may see a calf in the rock in the picture above. It not the Golden Calf because the idol was destroyed. But perhaps there is some relationship.

Have you ever wondered why the idol was a "calf"? Perhaps it was because the Egyptians had calf idols. We saw some in the Egyptian Museum.

A boat and a camel on the Red Sea
Continuing on our way to Jordan, we stopped for lunch at a nice hotel restaurant on the Gulf of Acaba, a large gulf of the Red Sea. Here we saw this contrast - a camel and a boat.

That is Jordan or Saudi Arabia in the backbround

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