My first experience of Nazareth (Israel) is certainly very different from that of the Sisters who came here before me. Having arrived at the peak of the pandemic, I stayed in quarantine for the first two weeks.

My first venturing outside the walls of the Patriarchate was, of course, to the Basilica of the Annunciation, which is just around the corner from our place of residence. The Basilica itself made a huge impression on me, a very beautiful, prayerful church… The place where Mary said her YES to God, not knowing what she was agreeing to… Just like in our lives, unlimited trust in God is necessary to do His will. On my way to Nazareth, I had only one dream… I wanted to kiss Mary’s feet in the beautiful statue of Mary of Nazareth, which all the Sisters probably know. I couldn’t believe when the iron grate opened just for me, I could go in and kiss her feet. After all, I did not ask anyone for this, only she knew about it…

On the same day, the Sisters took me to Mount Precipice, which is also quite close to the Patriarchate, about 15 minutes by car. From the top, there are beautiful views of almost all of Nazareth and its surroundings. When I look at this holy land, my thoughts always run to biblical descriptions. I think about Jesus, about the apostles and about Mary. We travel by car, but over two thousand years ago, they had to walk everywhere, and these are distances that require persistence and strength. I also often think how Jesus’ desire to share with us the Good News about the Kingdom of God was so great that He did not pay attention to distances and to the effort required to cover them. For Him, the most important thing was that people believe in the love that God has for us… because only faith in His limitless love makes us truly happy, free people, children of God.

Sr. Bogusława Machowska