God is Near

A Pilgrimage to the Holy Land with Nativity Parish

January 30 - February 8, 2023

About

Join Fr. Eric Augenstein and the Nativity family for a very special celebration of Nativity Catholic Church’s 75th anniversary! Prepare your heart for a life-changing experience walking in the footsteps of Christ on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. As we journey through the epicenter of the Christian faith, visiting the very places that have changed the world, you’ll experience God closer than ever before.

Trip Details

Group Type & Size

Nativity Parish Family, 20-45 pilgrims

Length

10 days, 9 nights

Accommodations

Standard

Cost

As low as

$4,088

Deposit:

$500

What's Included

Dedicated pilgrimage director (30 pilgrims or more), supplemented by local guides
Custom booklet for each pilgrim
Catholic Chaplain
Daily Mass
Private transportation on motor coach
All tickets and donations for included activities listed on itinerary
Standard accommodations
All meals, including wine at dinners
Gratuities for pilgrimage director, guide(s), driver(s), and meals
Audio headsets

Itinerary

January 30
Depart U.S.
  • Depart U.S. (flights not included in the package)
January 31
Tel Aviv
  • Arrive Tel Aviv and transfer to hotel
  • Welcome Dinner
  • Overnight in Tel Aviv
  • Accommodations: Herods Hotel or similar
  • Meals included: Dinner
February 1
Nazareth, Cana
  • Visit Nazareth, including Mass at the Basilica of the Annunciation and St. Joseph’s Church
  • Renew your wedding vows at Cana
  • Overnight in Tiberias
  • Accommodations: Pilgerhaus Guesthouse or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
February 2
Sea of Galilee, Galilee Churches
  • Boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, including Mass
  • Pray at Galilee churches including Mount of Beatitudes, Church of the Multiplication, Peter’s Primacy, and Capernaum
  • Overnight in Tiberias
  • Accommodations: Pilgerhaus Guesthouse or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
February 3
Mount Tabor, Jordan River, Jericho
  • Ascend Mount Tabor to the Basilica of the Transfiguration including Mass
  • Drive through West Bank to Jericho
  • Renewal of baptismal promises at the Jordan River
  • Float in the Dead Sea
  • Overnight in Jerusalem
  • Accommodations: Grand Court Hotel or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
February 4
Bethlehem
  • Day in Bethlehem including Mass at the Church of the Nativity and visit to
    Shepherds’ Fields
  • Lunch with local students from Bethlehem University
  • Shop at at a Christian cooperative store
  • Overnight in Jerusalem
  • Accommodations: Grand Court Hotel or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
February 5
Ein Karem, Bethlehem
  • Morning visit to the village of Ein Karem
  • Mass at Church of the Visitation, followed by visit to the Church of St.
    John the Baptist
  • Then, head back to Bethlehem to visit the Carmelite convent where the
    relics of St. Miriam Boroud are held
  • After lunch, a visit to Cremisan Winery with tasting
  • Overnight in Jerusalem
  • Accommodations: Grand Court Hotel or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
February 6
Mount of Olives, Mount Zion
  • Mount of Olives including Pater Noster, Dominus Flevit, Garden of Gethsemane, and Mass in the Church of All Nations
  • Visit the Western Wall
  • Mount Zion including St. Peter in Gallincantu, Cenacle, and Dormition Abbey
  • Overnight in Jerusalem
  • Accommodations: Grand Court Hotel or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
February 7
Via Dolorosa, Holy Sepulchre
  • Early morning Stations of the Cross along the Via Dolorosa
  • Mass at the tomb of Christ in the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre
  • Visit to St. Anne’s Church and the Pools of Bethesda
  • Farewell Dinner in a local restaurant
  • Overnight in Jerusalem
  • Accommodations: Grand Court Hotel or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
February 8
Departure
  • Depart Tel Aviv (flights not included in the package)
  • Meals included: Breakfast
(extension)February 8
Madaba, Mt. Nebo, Petra
  • Transfer into Jordan to visit Madaba, the “City of Mosaics” and St. George’s Church
  • Tour Mt. Nebo, where Moses died and was buried
  • Transfer to Petra
  • Overnight in Petra
  • Accommodations: Petra Moon Hotel (New Wing) or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
(extension)February 9
Petra
  • All day at Petra, including tour of the “Lost City” and museum
  • Overnight in Petra
  • Accommodations: Petra Moon Hotel (New Wing) or similar
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
(extension)February 10
Amman, Departure
  • Transfer to Amman
  • Panoramic city tour followed by lunch
  • Afternoon free time before transfer to Amman Airport
  • Depart Amman (flights not included in the package)
  • Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Led by

Chaplain
Fr. Eric Augenstein
Indianapolis, IN

Father Eric Augenstein, “Fr. Eric,” currently shepherds the community of Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ Church in Indianapolis as pastor, and is also Director of Vocations for the Archdiocese of Indianapolis, a role he has held since 2013. A seasoned pilgrimage chaplain, he has accompanied groups to Oberammergau, Italy, Greece, the Holy Land, Poland, and three World Youth Days (Rio de Janeiro, Krakow, and Panama City).

Fr. Eric was ordained a priest in 2004 and previously served as Associate Pastor of the Richmond Catholic Community and Chaplain of Seton Catholic High School, Richmond, IN (2004-2007), Pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church, New Albany, IN (2007-2013), Chaplain of Our Lady of Providence High School, Clarksville, IN (2011-2013), and Sacramental Minister of St. Agnes Catholic Church, Nashville, IN (2013-2019).

Pricing

As low as

$4,088

Package Cost (without savings)

$4,388

Trip Savings

Early bird (first 20 pilgrims to register)
Save $200/person
Pay balance by check
Save $100/person

Optional Add-ons

Single room supplement (limited availability)
$809/person
Travel protection
Quote provided after registration
Petra, Jordan extension (February 8-10)
$1,511/person
Extension single room supplement
$286/person

“As low as” price includes savings for early bird and pay balance by check.
Pricing listed per person in double-occupancy rooms and does not include airfare.
The number of available single-occupancy rooms is limited.

*Travel protection price is calculated based ona variety of factors and optional plans are provided by Travel Insured International.

Rates assume a minimum of 20 full-paying pilgrims.

  • Roundtrip airfare (optional add-on)
  • Passport, visa, or luggage fees
  • Any personal purchases
  • Meals while traveling
  • Drinks at meals, other than wine at dinners
  • Recommended travel protection (optional add-on)
  • Anything else not explicitly mentioned as included

Designated arrival and departures times

  • Arrival information
    • Arrive by: January 31, 2023
    • Arrival time: By 2:00pm
    • Arrival airport: Ben Gurion Tel Aviv Airport (TLV)
    • Arrival transfer: Pilgrims arriving by 2:00 p.m. will be transferred in groups according to arrival time to the Herods Hotel in Tel Aviv.
  • Departure information
    • Depart on: February 8, 2023
    • Departure time: Anytime on February 8
    • Departure airport: Ben Gurion Tel Aviv Airport (TLV)
    • Departure transfer: Pilgrims departing on February 8 will be transferred to the airport in groups according to departure time.
  • Extension departure information
    • If you have elected to add on the Extension package, please arrange your departing flight plan according to the following information.
      • Depart on: February 10, 2023
      • Departure time: Anytime after 7:00 PM
      • Departure airport: Amman Airport (AMM)
      • Departure transfer: Pilgrims departing on February 10 will be transferred to the airport in groups according to departure time.

 

Want to arrive or depart outside of the designated times?

  • Please note: If you arrive/depart outside of the designated times, private transfers (fee applies) can be arranged on your behalf. Airport transfers outside of the designated arrival/departure times are not included in the package pricing.
  • Private transfer information and pricing can be found in the Additional Information section below.
  • Need to book a private transfer? Contact us at hello@versoministries.com or call us at (574) 383-9396.

 

Want help arranging your flights?

Standard Accommodations

  • Tel Aviv: Herods Hotel or similar
  • Tiberias: Pilgerhaus Guesthouse or similar
  • Jerusalem: Grand Court Hotel or similar

 

Need to get around? Private transfers

  • Private transfer between Tel Aviv airport to Tel Aviv hotel/city center – $175 per transfer (up to 4 pax)
  • Private transfer between Tel Aviv airport and Jerusalem hotel/city center – $175 per transfer (up to 4 pax)
  • Private transfer between Tel Aviv airport and Tiberias hotel/city center – $360 per transfer (up to 4 pax)
  • Please note: If you arrive/depart outside of the designated times at the Tel Aviv airport, private transfers (fee applies) can be arranged on your behalf. Airport transfers outside of the designated arrival/departure times are not included in the package pricing.
  • Need to book? Contact us at hello@versoministries.com or call us at (574) 383-9396.

 

Arriving early or staying late? Pre-stay and post-stay options

Additional services

  • Private half-day Old City walking tour – $300/tour
    • departing from Jerusalem hotel
    • includes guide and tips
    • excludes entrance fees and transportation
  • Private full-day Old City walking tour – $480/tour
    • departing from Jerusalem hotel
    • includes guide and tips
    • excludes entrance fees, transportation, and lunch
  • Private tour with guide (up to 8 hours) – $890/tour (up to 5 pax)
    • departing from Tel Aviv or Jerusalem hotel
    • includes guide and driver(s), transportation in mini-van, and tips
    • excludes entrance fees and lunch
    • Possible tours: Bethlehem, Caesarea Maritima, Haifa, Jaffa, Nazareth, Tel Aviv, or the Dead Sea

Petra, Jordan Extension
February 8 – 10, 2023 (3 days / 2 nights)

Price: $1,511/person in double occupancy room
Rates assume a minimum of 4 full-paying pilgrims. 

Single room supplement: $286/person

Premium Accommodations: 
Petra: Petra Moon Hotel (New Wing) or similar

 

Extension includes:

  • English-speaking professional, licensed guide(s)
  • All tickets and donations for included activities listed on itinerary
  • Standard accommodations in double-occupancy rooms, including taxes (single room supplement available on a limited basis)
  • All meals, including wine at dinner
  • Private transportation
  • Allenby Exit Tax
  • Jordanian visa

Extension does not include:

  • Roundtrip airfare (optional add-on)
  • Passport or luggage fees
  • Any personal purchases
  • Meals while traveling
  • Drinks at meals, other than wine at dinners
  • Gratuities for guide(s), driver(s), and meals
  • Recommended travel insurance (optional add-on)
  • Anything else not explicitly mentioned as included

 

Curious how this extension will affect your flight arrangements?

  • Please see the Flight Information section above for more information about flight arrangements.

Need to get around? Private transfers

  • Please note: If you depart outside of the designated times at the Amman airport, private transfers (fee applies) can be arranged on your behalf. Airport transfers outside of the designated departure times are not included in the package pricing.
  • Need to book? Contact us at hello@versoministries.com or call us at (574) 383-9396.

Staying late? Post-stay options

  • Need to book? Contact us at hello@versoministries.com or call us at (574) 383-9396.

Deposit due upon registration – $500/person
Final balance due 120 days prior to departure – Final balance

Please note: Payment plans can be arranged if needed. Please contact us if you would like to pay in several installments.

Final package price is estimated. Prices are based on the current (as of July 2022) exchange rate of 3.53 Israeli New Shekel (NIS) to $1 USD. Any drastic fluctuations in currency exchange rates could affect the final pilgrimage pricing. If you have any questions about pricing and when final pricing decisions will be communicated, please do not hesitate to contact us at any time.

 

Cancellation Policy

All cancellations must be submitted to Verso Ministries in written form and received via email or mail. Any refunds, as applicable, will be processed based on the date stamp of email or mail received. Cancellation fees are for individual pilgrims and fees will be charged per person per booking.

Cancellations are possible at any time, but refunds are subject to cancellation fees at the rates listed here.

  • Within 2 weeks of deposit: Free Cancellation*
  • 91 days or more from departure: Deposit is retained
  • 90-61 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost is non-refundable
  • 60-31 days prior to departure: 50% of trip cost is non-refundable
  • 30 days or less prior to departure: 100% of trip cost is non-refundable

*Free cancellation (if deposit is made more than 180 days prior to departure)

Any cancellation charges incurred from other suppliers or vendors (flight, lodging, ground transportation, tickets, etc.) may come in addition to the administrative fees listed here. All group flight airline tickets, optional excursions, trip options, pre/post extensions, private transfers, and additional hotel nights are non-refundable 100 days or less prior to departure unless otherwise noted.

FAQ

The sooner you register for the pilgrimage, the better! Not only does registering guarantee you a spot on the pilgrimage before the departure fills up, but if you are one of the first 20 pilgrims to register you will receive the early bird discount. Also, there is no risk for 14-days after you register should you then have to cancel (must register 180 days or more prior to departure). So let’s say you register for a pilgrimage, but then realize you can no longer attend, as long as you cancel your pilgrimage within 14-days of registering and registered more than 180s days prior to the departure, then we will fully refund your deposit no questions asked. Just send us a written confirmation of your cancellation and we will take care of the rest. Plus, the sooner you register the sooner your journey begins. Register today!

There is no risk! Your deposit will be fully refunded as long as you cancel within 14-days of registering and you have registered more than 180 days or more prior to departure. With no risk, why wait? Get registered today!

Registration closes when the pilgrimage reaches the maximum number of pilgrims. If the pilgrimage is filled when you register, you will be added to our waiting list, and contacted in the event that space on the pilgrimage becomes available. Don’t miss your chance, register now and begin your journey.

We highly recommend that all pilgrims buy travel protection. Travel protection is not only for peace of mind, but helps protect you and those you are traveling with from unforeseen emergencies, which always seem to happen at the worst possible time. In the event of emergencies, both before and during your travels, as well other circumstances, like travel delay, lost baggage, missed connection(s), and much more, travel protection can help. Upon registration you will receive a travel protection quotation. If you have any questions regarding your quotation, please call the issuing company. If you need an updated or new quotation, please contact us at hello@versoministries.com or call us at 574-383-9396. We are happy to help!

Including optional add-ons with your pilgrimage can really add to your experience whether it is one of the optional extension or arranging an extra night stay beforehand so you are rested when the pilgrimage begins. If you would to add on any optional arrangements, as listed above, please email us at hello@versoministries.com or call us at 574-383-9396.

A pilgrimage, at its simplest, is a trip of faith. Which means a pilgrimage can be anything from a walk around your city to an encounter of Jesus in the Holy Land. For Catholics, it’s a trip of faith that people have been taking for hundreds or even thousands of years, many times in the same exact places you can visit today. It’s an opportunity to experience the spots God has made his presence known most in time and space, whether that’s where Jesus walked, where Mary appeared, or where the saints have lived and worked.

At Verso, we believe in crafting pilgrimages that offer you a view of God’s world and his work in it that you can’t get anywhere else. We believe everything from the holy sites, to the meals, to daily Mass, to your fellow pilgrims are ways God can speak to you, which means we’re intentional about it all. We also believe a pilgrimage isn’t just the days you travel, it’s how you prepare from the moment you sign up, to the days and weeks after you arrive home. Which means it’s our intention to shepherd you through the entire process — before, during, and after — so you can have the best, most transformative experience possible. We’re not just travel experts, we’re experts in Catholic pilgrimage.

We know from experience that preparing for a journey is just as important as the journey itself. Our goal is to make sure you’re physically, logistically, and spiritually ready for your pilgrimage. You’ll receive essential emails that will walk you through the process and give you ways to prepare your mind and heart for what you’ll encounter. A pre-trip webinar will make sure you are in touch with the Verso leader of the trip, can get trip-specific info, and can ask questions. We’ll send you a pilgrim kit that contains a comprehensive booklet for your trip along with some Verso swag (such as a bag, pen, and sticker) that you can bring along with you on your pilgrimage. And of course, we’re always available by phone or email if you have any questions or special needs.

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Activity Level

Easy
This trip’s activity level is easy. It’s recommended that travelers be in good health to enjoy this itinerary and be able to walk and climb stairs on their own. Trips at this activity level may include half or full-day itineraries with 1-3 hours of leisurely walking per day on smooth or slightly inclined terrain. The pace is more relaxed, with opportunities to rest throughout the day.

Moderate
This trip’s activity level is moderate. Travelers must be in good health and be in good physical condition to enjoy this itinerary. Travelers must be able to walk and climb stairs on their own. Trips at this activity level may include full-day itineraries of 3-5 hours of walking at a normal to brisk pace per day on varied terrain including uneven surfaces, stairs, and hills. The pace is faster and more demanding, with some breaks throughout the day.

Difficult
This trip’s activity level is difficult. Travelers must be in good health and physically fit to enjoy this itinerary. Trips at this activity level may include full-day itineraries with up to 5-7 hours of walking at normal to brisk pace per day on varied terrain including uneven surfaces, stairs, and steep hills. The pace is vigorous and demanding, with little down time each day.

Accommodation Level

Simple
For the duration of your trip, enjoy a range of lodging accommodations — from quaint guesthouses to simple-styled hotels. Discover a newfound appreciation for each of these locations which often have a unique character of their own. With your private bathroom and sleeping quarters, these locations will provide you with a clean, comfortable, and cozy place to settle into during your journey.

Standard
Venues at this level will provide you with the best accommodations at a reasonable cost. Not only will you have access to modern amenities and services, but special care is taken to ensure hotels are located in close proximity to the area’s local attractions. Expect your stay at this level to provide you with an added feeling of comfortability and convenience as you experience your pilgrimage.

Premium
Your stay at the premium level will ensure that your travel involves the opportunity to experience some of the most unique and luxurious stays that a destination has to offer. You’ll find that traveling at this level will afford you the opportunity to optimize your experience at each spot. From fine dining to scenic views, anticipate that your pilgrimage will provide you with breathtaking experiences no other location could provide.

How will I know what my stay will be like?
Each of our pilgrimage locations come with their own unique accommodations. From simple to luxurious, you can know that the care and satisfaction of each pilgrim is our greatest priority. While specific amenities will vary, we are sure that each of these handpicked locations will leave you rested, rejuvenated, and ready for each day.