Pastor and Parishioner

Enhance your ministry and introduce your congregation to the land of Israel through a study program with one of our academically-qualified instructors.


Come Alive to the Land of the Bible

What You Will Learn

This two-week introduction to the historical and geographical settings of the Bible will enrich your knowledge and appreciation of the reality of Scripture. Your understanding of the Bible will be strengthened as you recount biblical events in their actual locations. Your experiences will give substance to images that the biblical writers used to communicate the realities of God and His work in the world. This non-credit program is taught by the same academically-qualified faculty members who teach our for-credit short-term programs. Participants in the Pastor and Parishioner program may be able to receive academic credit if they complete additional course work at the discretion of the instructor (see below).

What You Will Do

Our short-term programs of study are quite different from typical Holy Land tours. Our instructors are academically-qualified faculty members who will lead in your discovery of the land of the Bible. You will visit nearly the entire country of Israel, including sites not normally viewed by participants of typical tours. While daily hiking can be rigorous and sustained in rugged terrain, it will allow you to read the Bible on site and enhance your spiritual life and ministry like never before. Participants in this program will primarily use the maps and resources created by Biblical Backgrounds.

When It Is Offered

  • February 14-27, 2022
  • March 14-27, 2022
  • June 20-July 03, 2022

Ready to Apply?

Follow the link below to submit your application to JUC.

Start your application

The Details

Sample Itinerary*

On this short term program, students typically visit the following sites:

1. Jerusalem Walks

  • The Four Quarters of the Old City of Jerusalem
  • Mount Zion
  • City of David
  • Western Wall
  • Southern Steps of the Temple Mount
  • Pool of Bethezda
  • Church of the Holy Sepulchre

2. Jerusalem Approaches Field Study

  • Mount of Olives and its churches
  • Herodium
  • Bethlehem

3. Benjamin Field Study

  • Judean Wilderness / Wadi Qilt
  • Jericho
  • Nebi Samwil
  • Gezer

4. Judah, Shephelah, Philistine Coast Field Study

  • Beth Shemesh
  • Valley of Elah
  • Bet Guvrin
  • Lachish
  • Ashkelon

5. The Dead Sea Area Field Study

  • Masada
  • Ein Gedi
  • Qumran
  • Dead Sea beach for swimming

6. Sharon Plain and Jezreel Valley Field Study

  • Caesarea
  • Mount Carmel
  • Megiddo
  • Nazareth

7. Galilee Field Study

  • Sepphoris
  • Arbel
  • Hazor
  • Dan
  • Banias / Caesarea Philippi
  • Golan Heights
  • Capernaum
  • Magdala
  • Tabgha / Primacy of Peter
  • Chorazim
  • Mount of Beatitudes
  • Kursi
  • Boat ride on the Sea of Galilee
  • Swimming in the Sea of Galilee

8. Jordan Field Study (Optional)**

  • Jerash
  • Jabbok River
  • Moabite capital of Dibon
  • Arnon gorge
  • Petra
  • Edomite capital of Bozrah
  • Ammonite capital of Rabbah
  • Amman
  • Madaba
  • Mount Nebo

*All itineraries are subject to change due to logistical
reasons or the preference of the instructor or group leader.

**The Jordan Extension requires a minimum of seven

Short-Term Studies Program Faculty

Important Information

JUC offers both on- and off-campus housing for our short-term students on nights when they will stay in Jerusalem. We also arrange accommodations with hotels when the class is traveling for field studies. The hotels furnish buffet-style breakfasts and dinners. JUC students are provided with lunches by JUC whether in Jerusalem or on field studies.

Jerusalem Off-Campus Housing

Students can choose hotel housing rather than JUC campus housing for an increased housing fee. While JUC cannot guarantee that students will stay at any particular place, each hotel we contract with is well-rated and in or adjacent to the Old City of Jerusalem.

Jerusalem On-Campus Housing

Students who opt to spend nights in Jerusalem on campus will stay in dormitory-style housing, with 2-6 persons (or sometimes more) to a room. The campus has limited housing for couples with no double beds available. According to season and demand, private rooms for couples on campus may be available. Shared bathroom facilities are a short walk away from each room, sometimes across a courtyard and up or down a flight of stairs.

JUC’s program is academically and physically rigorous, including up to twelve hour days in the field or longer. The field studies involve hours of walking, standing, and several hikes (although some are optional). There are usually opportunities to sit throughout the day and plenty of time on the bus. However, students should expect an intensely physical program and plan to sweat.

Everyone traveling to Israel must have a passport that expires at least six months after they plan to exit the country at the end of their program.

Short-term students who travel from countries that have normal relations with Israel will be issued a three-month tourist visa upon arrival. Students from the United States, Canada, and most European countries fall under this category. Students who come from countries that do not have normal relations with Israel will need to make prior visa arrangements before entering the country.

Read more about obtaining tourist visas here.

Students from countries who do not have a regular relationship with Israel may need additional security or immigration approval to study in Israel. Students from such countries may be responsible to apply for a visa at their nearest Israeli Consulate or Embassy, or JUC may need to apply on their behalf at the Ministry of Interior in Jerusalem. Visa decisions are entirely at the discretion of the Ministry of Interior, so JUC cannot guarantee that you will be able to obtain a visa successfully. Please contact us if you are from a country that does not have a regular relationship with Israel and have questions about this process.

Please note: if you plan to participate in the Jordan Extension and you are required to secure an entry visa into Israel prior to the start of the program, you MUST request and be granted a visa allowing multiple entries into Israel.

Our Pastor and Parishioner study program is traditionally not offered for credit. However, if a participant wishes to receive academic credit, JUC makes this option available. The student and their group leader must inform JUC prior to the start of the program that they wish to take the course for credit. Additional work will be assigned to the student by the instructor during the program, and a deadline will be set for completion after the program is over. If the academic requirements are successfully met, the student will receive credit.

A suggested packing list for JUC students is available in our student manuals. For long-term students who will be at JUC for a semester or more, here is a list of what to pack. For short-term students who will be at JUC for a few weeks, here is a list of what to pack

We take the safety of our students with the utmost seriousness and have a proven track record of operating for over 60 years in the Holy Land. Click here for detailed information about how JUC handles local issues related to safety and prepares students to do the same. 

Yes! All applicants are eligible to enroll in the Pastor and Parishioner study program, whether they are coming on their own or as a part of a church group.

No! The Pastor and Parishioner program is designed for pastors, Christian workers, and church members.

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