Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Nicosia Cyprus District Conference May 22nd

Elder Kerr, Area Authority Seventy presided over the District Conference . It was a weekend of great teaching and testimonies. Elder Kerr was powerful and bold and funny and faithful, everyone loved every minute of the weekend. Nearby, at the Freedom Memorial there is a small olive grove. It was by the olive grove that almost 20 years ago Joseph B Wirthlin dedicated Cyprus for the preaching of the Gospel.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Tombs of the Kings

The Tombs of the Kings are an early necropolis in Paphos dating from 300 BC. The burial niches were looted of all artifacts long ago, but a powerful sense of stillness and mystery remains.

The name of the site is misleading—there's no evidence of any royalty buried here. Rather, the site was the final resting place of about 100 Ptolemaic aristocrats who lived and died in Paphos beginning in the 3rd century BC.

Early antiquarians dubbed the site the "Tombs of the Kings" due to the impressiveness of the tombs, and the name has stuck.

The catacombs were later used by early Christians, and one of the tombs was turned into a chapel. Beyond the colonnades, passages lead to rooms with niches (loculi) for individual corpses. Bodies were buried with costly grave goods, including jewelry and cosmetic boxes.

As was common in the classical world, on the anniversaries of death loved ones would hold a ceremonial meal (nekrodhipno) at the tomb, with the leftovers deposited near the body.

This is a view of the ruins.

This is the view of the Mediterranean Sea from the ruins.

And this is Pafos Cyprus

Cyprus is renowned as the island of beauty. The "Petra tou Romiou" area(top picture) is one of the most beautiful coastlines in Cyprus, where, according to mythology, Aphrodite rose from the waves. The Greek name "Petra tou Romiou" means "the Rock of the Greek". It is beautiful here, unfortunately, I can't get in the water. But I do get to literally walk in the footsteps of Paul. See Acts 13:5-6. In 45 AD the two Apostles Paul and Barnabas, accompanied by Mark, traveled from Antioch to Silesia and from there by ship to Cyprus, arriving at Salamis, the largest port on the island at the time. In Pafos, they managed to convert the Roman Proconsul who embraced the Christian faith thereby making Cyprus the first country in the world to be governed by a Christian.