But is that an accurate location?
Not even tour guides necessarily agree.
All four evangelists note that Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River, and John even narrows the area to "Bethany beyond Jordan." Mark and Matthew's description of the event has led to a tradition that the baptism occurred at a spot near the river, just east of Jericho. Even then, no one knows if the baptism took place near the east or the west bank of the river.
Adding to the difficulty of determining the exact place of Jesus' baptism, the Jordan River itself has altered course over the past 2,000 years. In order to meet Israel's and Jordan's growing need for water, the river has also gotten smaller in modern times.
In May 202, a site close to the border between Irsael and Jordan was reopened to pilgrims as the place where Jesus was baptized. It had been closed to tourists because the location is only 330 feet across the rive from Jordan, and because of the danger of land mines that may have been left by terrorists.
Three popes have visited the eastern bank of the Jordan River: Pope John Paul II in March 2000, Pope Benedict XVI in May 2009, and Pope Francis in May 2014.
- Little Blue Book, Diocese of Saginaw