In 2018 I will be having a sabbatical in instalments, the first being a 3-week visit to Israel in February. As well as visiting Jerusalem, I plan to travel to Galilee and do a sponsored bike-ride right around the lake in one day (35 miles).

The visit is a pilgrimage, to see some of the places we hear about all through our lives, and pray in them. In such a pilgrimage, seeking to come near Christ in his own places, it isn’t possible to ignore his presence among the suffering Palestinian people. And so for the return journey to Jerusalem I hope (depending on what the news brings) to catch the number 961 bus (listed as an ‘armoured’ bus on the timetable, but looking no different from one of our Mirfield buses). Taking a 3-hour route through Israel-controlled parts of the West Bank, the plan is just to just sit in it and pray.

I will be seeking sponsorship for the whole journey around Galilee and through the Palestinian territories, half of the proceeds to go to CR’s campaign for the future, and half to the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel, whose volunteers accompany vulnerable communities and individuals, giving voice to local groups working nonviolently for peace. They monitor and document human rights abuses and work to deter violence on both sides.

As with previous bike rides, we hope to post a film on YouTube. More information will be posted in due course on our website.

George CR


To sponsor George please visit