Friday the 13te of April 2012 I took a series of pictures of a pilgrim group belonging to the Syriac Ortodox faith.
This pilgrims originally from Syria which they have fled because of persecution are living now in European countries and still cling to their religions tradition. They speak an Arameic and read the Bible in this language.
The pictures were taken in St. Mark’s Monastery, Jerusalem.
The pictures tell about some elderly people who have an old tradition to come to Israel and each time they visit the Holy Land they get either a tattoo that is a religions one (a cross, crucifixion, ascension, the virgin Mary, baby Jesus ect) or the date of their pilgrimage.
A pilgrim may have several dates tattooed on their arm. One for each visit.
The series of pictures shows the site, the accommodation and the work of the tattooist.
For instance one picture show a man with a cross, in another we can notice the picture of Maria and Jesus.
In one picture we can see clearly the cross and the date of pilgrimage. One picture depicts the tattooist at his work doing a tattoo on the arm of a pilgrim.
People can also be accommodated at the convent. So some pictures show for instance hanging stockings, a blanket, beds.
People usually stand in time or sit waiting for their turn to be tattoed.

*Words and photographs by Th3Max.


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