Take a look around...
Return to Nebo intro
Back to page 2

In 2000, Pope John Paul II visited the site during a personal pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Crowds of between 65-80,000 people flanked his route to Mt. Nebo. Upon reaching the holy site he was received by local church leaders, offering a prayer on the occasion of his historic visit. Run your cursor over the thumbnails below to enlarge several rare pictures of the ceremony. A stone monument has been erected along the pathway to the sanctuary to commemorate the event and a plaque placed inside.

Site excavations continue, with religious and layfolk, students, professionals and artists from Italy, Jordan, Malta, Spain, Syria, the USA, Argentina and Zaire coming to work at the site every summer. Through labors such as these as well as that of the Franciscans, Nebo has been landscaped with trees, shrubs and flowers, a basilica-museum and sanctuary. The work has been used as an example by other regional restorations, showing that a confluence of "art, faith and civilization can be salvaged without astronomical expenditure and grandiose development schemes," say the monks.

The Franciscans' Nebo Expedition, based in Madaba, has also resulted in the creation of the Madaba School of Mosaic, receiving support from the governments of Italy, Canada and the USA.

Albeit a bit more rustic than the splendor of other noble sanctuaries around the world, the site has been enriched by the efforts expended upon it and by the simple grace of its history and location. The basilica on Nebo is presently the only sanctuary in Jordan affiliated with Moses, according to the Franciscans. The mount is regarded as a place of peace and contemplation; a place for the discovery of intangible but no less real commodities that are too often lost in a material world.Take me home!