Baptism Site of Jesus Christ
Wadi Kharrar Travel Blog› entry 10 of 19 › view all entries
This is the officially recognized site of the baptism of Joshua (Jesus Christ) by John the Baptist. Yes, this site is heavily controversial because Israeli tourist companies regularly take visitors to the Jordan River to be baptized as Jesus was. Israel is now building a visitors center at the site as well because the Pope endorsed this particular site as being the one true site. It’s all bogus in my opinion because of how much the river has changed in the past 2000 years since pilgrims have been coming to the site. The Jordan is now basically a canal and located 100m from the site. The river used to be wider than the Mississippi in biblical times and its windings have been shifting since then. There is a Byzantine church built on this site (actually there are three built on top of each other because the river kept flooding and destroying them) as well as a modern Greek orthodox church built not far from the waters. The Greek Church is, as most orthodox churches are, very impressive on the inside and draw you in with heavenly chants and music. Over all it was a good experience but keep in mind that this is probably the lowest and thus the hottest place in Jordan. The development was a little tacky and the gift shops were worse; hardly a genuine tribute to the King of Kings but the Jordanians are trying very hard to accommodate tourist and help expand the growing industry of tourism in the Holy Land.