ONE Magazine

The official publication of
Catholic Near East Welfare Association

Celebrating 50 years | God • World • Human Family • Church

Springtime in the Holy Land

A photo essay on the season of rebirth in the Holy Land.

“Think of the flowers growing in the fields; they never have to work or spin; yet I assure you that not even Solomon in all his regalia was robed like one of these.” (Matthew 6: 28-30)

Springtime has a universal appeal. The effect of its beauty on human beings is the same everywhere: the “greening” of the earth each year brings bright eyes and hearts, and smiling faces.

In certain ways, though, springtime in the Holy Land is different from the spring season anywhere else. One thing making it special is that that land is the place where Christ lived. Like the people of the area today, Our Lord experienced the magnificent light and color of Jerusalem sunrises and sunsets. By the Sea of Galilee, and on the banks of the River Jordan, He, too, walked among splendid spring flowers.

Those flowers, also, contribute to the uniqueness of the Holy Land springtime. The “glory of the season” bloom in greater variety there than almost anywhere else in the world. The deserts of the area are said to contain 400 varieties of wild flowers not found elsewhere. Many flowers in the Kingdom of Jordan have never even been classified.

Springtime comes at different times to different areas of the Holy Land, depending upon rainfall and elevation. In February, color begins to reign once again in the Jordan Valley, and the season moves in waves to other parts of the land. With the proper amount of rainfall, spring could last through May.

Surely a gift from God, springtime, especially in the Holy Land, leads us to pose the same question which poet Matthew Arnold raised: “Is it so small a thing…to have lived light in the spring?”

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