Days 1 & 2 – Arrival
Depart US, arrive Thessaloniki, Greece
Our pilgrimage begins as we depart the United States on our international flight. We are met in Thessaloniki and transferred to our hotel for dinner and a relaxing evening.
Day 4 – Philippi and Neapolis (modern day Kavala)
Following breakfast we depart for Philippi, the first major city Paul visited on his 2nd missionary journey. At Philippi we visit the site of Lydia’s baptism followed by a tour of the archaeological site, visiting the bema, forum, basilicas, theater, city walls, and traditional location of Paul’s imprisonment. Then we visit the port of Philippi, the biblical city of Neapolis (today called Kavala) and tour the port, aqueduct, and mosaic of Paul. After touring, we return to Thessaloniki for overnight.
Day 6 – Berea, Vergina, Mt. Olympus
After breakfast we travel to Vergina, site of the Royal Tombs and Palace of Philip II of Macedon, father of Alexander the Great. We explore the museum and the Macedonian Tombs with their priceless artifacts, wall paintings, and edifices. We continue our travel to Berea to see the Rostrum of Paul and the Jewish Quarter with its Synagogue. Our emphasis is upon Paul and his Synagogue Sermon (Acts 13). The afternoon allows us time for a hike on legendary Mt. Olympus. We return from the hike to a quaint inn in the mountainside village of Litohoro where we spend the night.
Day 7 – Meteora
Departing Litohoro we travel to Thessaly and central Greece. We visit the monasteries of Meteora perched high atop towering rock formations. We are introduced to Eastern Orthodoxy with an orientation to basic doctrine, beliefs, and practices. During the afternoon we continue to Delphi for dinner & overnight.
Day 9 – Athens: Acropolis, Areopagus, Agora
Our tour of Athens includes a visit to the Theater of Dionysios, Acropolis, Parthenon, Erectheion, Temple of Athena Nike, Propylaia, and Acropolis Museum. We also visit the Areopagus (Mars Hill) and examine the sermon of Paul to the Athenians. We visit the ancient Athenian agora and its museum. The afternoon brings us into the Plaka for a walking orientation of this historic district. Overnight Athens.
Day 11 – Greek Island Cruise
Today we set out on the blue waters of the Aegean for a day cruise to the picturesque islands of Hydra, Poros, and Aegina.
Day 13 – Athens: Classical and Modern
We continue our tour of Athens with a visit to the Pan Athenian Stadium, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the Temple of Zeus, Hadrian’s Arch, and the National Archaeological Museum of Athens. Overnight Athens.
Day 14 – Athens: Free Day
Free Day. In the evening we convene for a final group dinner in the Plaka to say “andio” to Greece. Overnight Athens.
Day 17 – Rome: Vatican City
Today we visit the Vatican City and the Vatican Museum/Sistine Chapel, world famous for Michelangelo’s ceiling frescos and the Last Judgment. We end the day in St. Peter’s Basilica and Square and view Michelangelo's "Pieta."
Day 19 – Rome: Christian Rome
We make our way to the Catacombs and explore these underground burial sites. We then visit the Basilica of St. John Lateran, one of the four major basilicas of Rome and the ecclesiastical seat of the Pope. Continuing our studies in the life of Paul, we visit the basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls built over the site of Paul's tomb. Afternoon free followed by our closing celebratory group dinner.
Day 20 – Departure
Depart Rome, arrive USA.
Day 3 – Thessaloniki
We begin our time in Greece with a cultural orientation, introduction to the life of the Apostle Paul, and a basic Greek language lesson. We then set out on a walking tour of Thessaloniki including the White Tower, Arch of Galerius, Rotunda, St. Demitrios Church, and the ancient Roman forum. We begin our study of the ministry of Paul and discuss his letter to the Thessalonians.
Day 5 – Thessaloniki: Greek Orthodox Service & Study Day
This day is a time for small group topic discussions and presentations as well as a visit to a Greek Orthodox church to attend a service.
Day 8 – Delphi
Morning field preparation and tour of the archaeological site of Delphi. Delphi was the most important religious center of classical Greece. There we see the Sanctuary of Apollo, Oracle of Delphi, agora, Sacred Way, theater, and stadium. We also tour this significant museum with its bronze Charioteer. After lunch and free time we arrive late afternoon in Athens for dinner and overnight.
Day 10 – Corinth
Crossing the Isthmian Canal we visit ancient Corinth where we see the Temple of Apollo, agora, bema, Peirene Fountain, and Stoa. While in the agora we celebrate the Lord’s Supper (I Corinthians 11) and spend time in worship. We also examine Paul’s cultural context of life in the urban centers of the Roman world. Students are then free to hike through the ruins of an ancient Venetian castle on the Acrocorinth. Overnight in Athens.
Day 12 – Athens: Evangelical Church Visit
We attend a service at the 1st Evangelical Church of Athens. Schedules permitting, we meet with the pastor and members of the church to learn about the Evangelical church in Greece and join together in fellowship. Overnight Athens.
Day 15 – Rome: Orientation
After an early morning flight to Rome, we check into our hotel in the Old City of Rome. In the afternoon we begin our orientation of the city with a walk to the Piazza Popolo, the Corso, the ancient Pantheon with its massive construction, and the magnificent Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. Overnight in Rome.
Day 16 – Rome: Classical Rome
Today we see the heart of the great Roman Empire and examine its impact on the life and ministry of Paul. We tour the Palatine Hill, home of the Roman Emperors, before visiting the forum and its many sites: the arches of Titus and Septimius Severus, Regia, Temple of the Vestal Virgins, rostra, senate chamber, and much more. We then visit the arch of Constantine before entering the world famous Coliseum where we examine the plight of the Christian martyrs.
Day 18 – Assisi
Today we make our way to the Umbrian town of Assisi, home to the Catholic Saint Francis. We begin our tour at the Basilica of St. Claire, one of Francis' first followers and the founder of the Order of Poor Ladies. After making our way through the small town, we tour the Basilica of St. Francis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, adorned with frescoes by Giotto.