We made it! We were delayed out of New York so our 9.5 hour flight turned into a 12 hour flight while they fixed the airplane while we were seated. That made us miss our connection in Istanbul so we waited 6 hours in Istanbul for our flight to Kayseri which was over an hour late so it was really 7 hours. That means we were traveling for about 32-34 hours before arriving at our hotel.
Today we went to Cappadocia. It is an area known for its rock formations and cave dwellings. It is an important site for Christians because St. Basil the Great lived among the caves in the area. He is one of the early fathers of the Church, especially for the monastic life. He emphasized community life and a community rule among other things. He battled the Arian heresy that said Christ was not fully human or divine, he was somewhere in the middle.
The orthodox (right teaching) is that Christ is both fully human and fully divine (which is important on many levels). The Nicene Creed (which was from the Council of Nicea, here in Turkey) states that Christ "is one being with the Father". So today we were at the home of one of the most influencial leaders in the early Church. We saw the caves they lived in and the churches that they worshipped in. The frescos (think paintings) dated from the 9th century and some from the 13th century. Pretty amazing stuff. We also toured the countryside and saw the unique topography which draws tourists from all over the world.
The weather is good, not too hot and not too windy. I am feeling pretty good considering all the events and I am very thankful for that. For those of you who are praying for me it is working so keep it up!! Also this year I brought my father-in-law's camera (which is better than mine) and I am delighted with the shots (210 today).
To see a small sample click here