- Posted August 22, 2012 by
San Diego, California
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Travel photo of the day
WHEN VISITING THE HOLY LAND, PLEASE KEEP YOUR PANTS ON!
I have never had the privilege of visiting the Holy Land, but it's on my bucket list. I do know that if I was ever elected as a REPRESENTATIVE of the United States and traveled abroad on a paid junket to the land of Jesus, I would strive to behave most honorably.
Which means that it makes me absolutely sick to read what The Atlantic.com reported: "The FBI probed a late-night swim in the Sea of Galilee that involved drinking, numerous GOP freshmen lawmakers, top leadership staff -- and one nude member of Congress, according to more than a dozen sources, including eyewitnesses. During a fact-finding congressional trip to the Holy Land last summer, Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.) took off his clothes and jumped into the sea, joining a number of members, their families and GOP staff during a night out in Israel." Lest I look or sound like a prude, I state for the record that I have absolutely nothing against skinny-dipping. I have done it myself--but just not in sanctified waters mentioned in the Bible!
Can we say Ugly Americans? Congressman Yoder can skinny-dipping all he wants-it's no big deal! But the fact that he felt compelled to disrobe at the Sea of Galilee is something that certainly shows disrespect and an insensitivity to the historical and Biblical importance of this area.
The Sea of Galilee is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful places and favorite tourism areas in the Holy Land. It has changed remarkably little since the days of Jesus. The Biblical mention of the Sea is noted in The New Testament Gospels, particularly Mark. It was here that Jesus met Simon Peter, James and John, His first disciples. The Lord proclaimed that he would make them "fishers of men." It was also here that He performed many miracles: stilling the raging storm on the Sea of Galilee; He walked on the stormy water to His disciples, preached the Sermon of the Mount, and performed the miracle of the draught of fish. The waters of the Sea of Galilee are blessed and sacred. "You will never read your Bible with more complete understanding than when you touch the waters of Galilee," is a saying from the Holy Land and Atlas Tours.
Imagine the complete and utter lack of respect to drunkenly disrobe in a foreign country and then skinny dip in the very place where Jesus walked on water? I don't so much as fear for Congressman Yoder's reputation, as I do for his very soul.
Is it any wonder that we Americans are viewed askance abroad when something objectionable like this happens? Livid was the word describing the reaction of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor-- who was also along on the trip but was not present for the late night antics. "When Cantor was told about what happened, according to Republican sources, he called members of the delegation to say the behavior was unacceptable and must never be repeated," according to an ABC News report. Thank goodness there is someone around who realizes the severity of Yoder's utter impropriety!
Yoder's actions, which he has recently been repentant of, is something more than a harmless, drunken prank. I would term it a desecration of a holy site and I would remind all Americans who are fortunate enough to pay their respects to the land of Jesus, to please behave appropriately and with due regard for the historical and Biblical significance of the places where Jesus once walked the earth.
Representative Yoder has made his apologies already and I would hope that if he is a Catholic, it would be advisable to pray the rosary in remission for his sins.
100 Hail Mary's for subjecting sacred Biblical waters to the sight of a drunken, naked yokel, I mean Yoder.
photo credit: atlantic.com