The French Catholics have this site, the traditional site of the home of Anne, mother of Mary. There is still the cave where Mary grew up, now underneath the church. This is the oldest church intact in all of Israel, left from the Byzantines and not destroyed by the Persians because they used it as a school.
This is maybe one of my top five favorite places in Israel, especially this year. I do not believe in worshipping those who have deceased, but I do believe they work in our behalf from the other side of the veil. I am grateful for their ministry. I was especially overcome in this place of motherhood: Anne the mother of Mary, and Mary the mother of the Savior. Between our miscarriages and the loss of my mother so recently, I did find both strength and comfort here. I also cried and cried.
I also paid a shekel to light a candle for my mother, praying only to my Heavenly Father, but memorializing her the same as I do at Relay for Life on cancer day. It was good, and healing.