October 5, 2012

Advent pilgrimage includes exhibit of Dead Sea Scrolls

The 12th Station of the Cross depicting Jesus on Calvary is among the ornate religious artwork at St. Mary’s Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption in Covington, Ky. The basilica has 82 stained-glass windows. It was dedicated on Jan. 27, 1901, and the facade was completed in 1910. (File photo by Mary Ann Garber)

The 12th Station of the Cross depicting Jesus on Calvary is among the ornate religious artwork at St. Mary’s Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption in Covington, Ky. The basilica has 82 stained-glass windows. It was dedicated on Jan. 27, 1901, and the facade was completed in 1910. (File photo by Mary Ann Garber)

By Mary Ann Garber

An archdiocesan Advent pilgrimage to Cincinnati and northern Kentucky on Dec. 12 will give pilgrims an opportunity to view some of the Dead Sea Scrolls, priceless relics from the Holy Land that have been described as “the most significant archaeological find of the last century.”

Bishop Christopher J. Coyne, apostolic administrator, will lead the one-day pilgrimage on the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

The pilgrimage will feature a visit to the Cincinnati Museum Center to view the “Dead Sea Scrolls—Life and Faith in Ancient Times” exhibit.

More than 600 items on display in the “once-in-a-lifetime exhibit” include the oldest known copies of the Hebrew Bible as well as iconic objects from daily life, artifacts from the City of David and a 3-ton stone from the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

“I am looking forward to visiting Cincinnati and spending the day with some good folks from the archdiocese,” Bishop Coyne said of the pilgrimage. “It should be both informative and fun.”

The exhibit opens on Nov. 16 and continues through April 14, 2013.

In 1947, a shepherd found a hidden cave along the shore of the Dead Sea then discovered ancient scrolls inside it that had not been seen in more than 2,000 years.

Archaeologists excavated the site and 10 other caves in the area from 1947 through 1956, and uncovered 972 scrolls which are remarkably well preserved.

These handwritten manuscripts date back to the development of Judaism and Western Judeo-Christian civilization.

Carolyn Noone, associate director of special events for the archdiocese, said the Advent pilgrimage is “a wonderful way to begin to participate in the Church’s international Year of Faith and prepare for the celebration of Christmas.”

The pilgrimage begins with Mass celebrated by Bishop Coyne at the historic St. Mary’s Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption, an ornate Gothic church dedicated in 1901 in Covington, Ky.

The cathedral is one of only 35 minor basilicas in the U.S. It has 82 stained-glass windows.

The pilgrims will also enjoy a hearty German lunch at America’s first authentic Hofbräuhouse in Newport, Ky., which was modeled after the legendary restaurant of the same name built more than 400 years ago in Munich, Germany.

After lunch, the pilgrims will visit the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit and “Holiday Junction” vintage model trains display at the Cincinnati museum then return to the Archbishop O’Meara Catholic Center in Indianapolis at about 6 p.m.
 

(For more information, contact Carolyn Noone at 317-236-1428 or 800-382-9836, ext. 1428. The pilgrimage fee is $109 per person, which includes deluxe motor coach transportation, light breakfast, lunch, and entrance fees to the museum and special exhibits. The trip will be filled on a first-come basis. THIS EVENT IS CURRENTLY SOLD OUT)

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