Last week, (Wednesday, April 20th), 3,000 Syriac Orthodox, Greek Orthodox, and Coptic pilgrims and bishops participated in a traditional baptism ceremony for the upcoming Easter holiday at the Qasr Al-Yahud baptism site in the Jordan Valley. The pilgrims were accompanied by IDF officers and soldiers from the Jordan Valley Division as well as Civil Administration officers.
Qasr Al-Yahud, on the banks of the Jordan River, is widely considered by Christians to be the place at which Jesus was once baptized by John the Baptist.
Both the Israeli government and the IDF have worked hard to make the necessary arrangements to accommodate the mass pilgrimage to the site over the past year. The Civil Administration (part of COGAT, the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories unit) and the Ministry of Tourism have invested thousands of shekels on renovating the site and installing proper facilities for the pilgrims.
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