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NicoleJansezian / Uncategorized / Olive Branch Festival in the Galilee Celebrates the Tiny, but Rich Fruit
Olive Branch Festival in the Galilee Celebrates the Tiny, but Rich Fruit
The humble little olive, a staple of Holy Land cuisine, is rich with biblical symbolism and is the subject of an annual festival going on right now in the Galilee region of northern Israel.
Up until November 7, the 16th annual Olive Branch Festival, sponsored by the Israel Ministry for the Development of the Galilee and Negev, the Galilee Development Authority and the Olive Council, is celebrating the small fruit.
The olive branch is perhaps best known as the symbol of peace. But in the Bible the olive holds a rich host of uses. The oil of olives is used to anoint and to light. It is a symbol of healing. Also, the olive tree is also used as an example in the New Testament as Christians being “grafted” in to the Jewish people through Jesus. The Mount of Olives in eastern Jerusalem is where Jesus prayed the night before he was arrested and condemned to die.
This year’s theme is “A Tribute to the Olive in Different Cultures.” The festival is taking place in four northern Galilean communities including Cfar Veredim, Hananiya Farms, Cfar Kama and Agmon Hula. Activities planned like classes highlighting the olive’s health benefits, olive press tours, workshops, guided hikes, cycle and jeep tours mark the festival. Plus there will be gourmet meals and olive related alternative health treatments available. The festival aims to increase awareness of the health benefits of the olive.
“The annual Olive Branch festival is a unique event that attracts travelers from around the world to celebrate one of the region's most popular exports--the olive,” said Haim Gutin, Israel Tourism Commissioner, North and South America. “The festival will provide valuable insight into the lives of the residents who inhabit the olive-rich region.”
Olives and olive oil have played a role in Israel since biblical times. Olive pits as old as 6,000 years old have been found in the land, and in Deuteronomy 8:7, Israel is referred to as a land of olive, oils and honey. During the fall harvest, residents pick olives from trees in neighborhood parks.
By Nicole Jansezian, Travelujah
Nicole Jansezian writes for Travelujah.com,
the only Christian social network focused on travel to the Holy Land. People can learn, plan and share their Holy Land tour and travel experiences on Travelujah
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