The weather was perfect for our annual staff outing on Sunday June 3, and from the time we left Jerusalem until the time of departure from the National Park of Gan Hachlocha or Sukhneh near Beit Shean.
Throughout the whole bus journey we were entertained with the singing and laugher of over 50 members of staff with their families and members of the Chemin Neuf Community and Sisters of Notre Dame de Sion. The many children and teenagers added a great spirit of festivity in a park that was just perfect for such an occasion; with many pools fed by an underground spring.
The delight of the children as they enjoyed the water was just incredible to see, they could not get enough of it and to play on the grass was pure delight. For some of us it was enough just to observe the joy and excitement of the children and the contentment of the parents to see their children enjoy themselves. The park provides great lawns and shady trees so the adults could relax and chat among themselves when they were not in swimming. At lunch time families shared their food with others giving all a chance to mix and converse. Some had brought barbeques so we enjoyed delicious cooked meat.
The park closed at 16.45 and the children and some of the older ones had to be almost dragged on to the bus. As we began our journey homewards Ziad took the lead and said to all, “it is now time to thank, if we do not thank each other we do not thank God,” He then proceeded to name all those who had made the day possible and happy for all. Although all were tired the singing and clapping continued until we reached Damascus Gate full of gratitude after having enjoyed an amazingly wonderful day together.