A few days ago, I received a Fedex package from the Israeli Embassy. I opened it with trepidation, halfway convinced that it would contain another rejection. My passport, which I had sent in with the application, fell out of the packet. Upon opening the passport, I was surprised and delighted to discover a student visa neatly pasted onto one of the pages. The visa is good for one year, and multiple entries into the country are allowed.
This is great news for me, since the visa was the last major roadblock for me in getting to Israel. Now, I am working on the final details for the trip as well as planning for my stop at the Near Eastern Archaeological Society meeting in Texas on my way to Israel. I’m pretty excited that things seem to finally be falling into place. It is only about two weeks until I am scheduled to leave. Thank you so much to those who have donated, and continue to donate to the Go-Fund-Me that Dr. Stripling set up to help with my moving expenses.
Meanwhile, we are gearing up for a winter dig at Shiloh. The dig is scheduled to run from January 1–22. We will pick up where we left off in the summer of 2019. It will be a fun and exciting time. Out excavation is located on the northern edge of the ancient city, in an area that was occupied from the Middle Bronze Age through the Byzantine period. According to Joshua 18:1, the Israelites set up the tabernacle at Shiloh, making it an important early Israelite site. If you are interested in volunteering on the dig, you can find more details here.