S+L logo

Sunday night premiere - Within Your Gates: A Pilgrim Guide to the Holy Land

May 16, 2010
Regular blog readers will recall that in November, Salt + Light filmed extensively in Israel and the Palestinian Territories. Tonight we show you the first film from that trip: Within Your Gates: A Pilgrim Guide to the Holy Land.
A view of Old Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives  - Photo: David Le RossThis evening's broadcast commemorates the first anniversary of Pope Benedict's own voyage to the Holy Land. I credit the Holy Father with introducing me to the spirituality of the biblical sites, as I followed him while providing live commentary for his eight-day visit.
As I watched the Pope travel from Amman to Jerusalem, then to Bethlehem and Nazareth, I often wondered whether he was disappointed by the experience. At each stop, he was surrounded by boisterous crowds. Dignities pressed in on him at every turn. Surely he felt the pressure of knowing that every word was being mined for political significance. Cameras stared as he tried to pray.
Orthodox woman at the Holy Sepulchre - Photo: David Le RossSimilarly, my own trip to the Holy Land risked being overwhelmed by external pressures, as I described in an earlier post. I needed to stay focused on my work, which was often undermined by the complicated logistics of filming in a foreign country (whose labyrinthine streets, frustratingly, haven't yet been been mapped by Google).
So, to ensure that I benefited spiritually from the experience, I sought out a Catholic pilgrim guide. Multiple recommendations led me to The Pilgrim's New Guide to the Holy Land by Fr. Stephen Doyle, OFM. The Christian Brothers at Bethlehem University trustingly lent me their out-of-print copy. (Brother Peter: I promise to return it!)
Instead of just deepening my personal journey, Fr. Doyle's descriptions and biblical reflections ended up inspiring the documentary you'll see tonight. Having led countless tours before his retirement, the Franciscan reminds us that pilgrims aren't drawn to the Holy Land for its archaeological importance. Rather, here, in a unique way, the Holy Spirit still sings of the God who broke through and walked among us.
Within Your Gates airs tonight on S+L at 8:30 pm ET (11:30 pm PT). For a preview, watch the Thursday, May 13th edition of Perspectives.
Related posts
Day four of the Pre-synod meetings taking place in Rome where youth from all over the world have come to talk candidly with Pope Francis about the future of the Catholic Church. The main themes from t ...read more
Oscar Romero and the legacy of Hope
(S+L Photo: TFI Director Sebastian Gomes and Cinematographer Peter Turek film in Aguilares, El Salvador on Feb 27, 2018) The crew of “The Francis Impact” traveled to El Salvador from Febru ...read more
Understanding Oscar Romero
A short reflection on Ocar Romero’s influence, legacy, and what he represents for millions of Latin Americans to commemorate his Feast Day on March 24. ...read more
A Reflection on Blessed Oscar Romero
Fr. Thomas Rosica, CSB gives us a personal reflection on the Blessed Oscar Romero, Archbishop of San Salvador. "Who will Finish the Eucharist? A reflection on Blessed Oscar Romero" ...read more
Good evening and welcome to Perspectives Daily At the Pope’s weekly General Audience today, he continued his catechesis on the Mass reflecting on the rite of Holy Communion and invited Christians to ...read more