Archaeologists were forced to abandon their site at the village of Bethsaida in Israel when Lake Kinneret, also known as the Sea of Galilee, flooded.
The village of Bethsaida in Israel has been flooded by the waters of Lake Kinneret, forcing archaeologists to abandon the site of the biblical miracle of the loaves and fishes, according to a report at UCANews.com.
Archaeologists working at the site will not be able to continue their work for the rest of the year, according to Prof. Moti Aviam of Kinneret College.
“The entire site is covered today with a large lagoon in which catfish are swimming,” he said, according to the the UCANews report.
The ancient village of Bethsaida is believed to be the location of the fishing village in the Bible where Jesus fed the 5,000 with just five loaves and two fish, and where he helped a blind man see. It was also the home of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, Andrew and Paul.
The Roman historian Titus Flavius Josephus wrote that Bethsaida was not far from where the River Jordan enters the Sea of Galilee.
According to the ACANews report, Aviam said that the excavation site of El-Araj matches that location and also contains signs of a Roman settlement Josephus described.
“We also discovered evidence of a Roman-type bathhouse, which is more typical of an urban sphere. Nothing like that was found at Et-Tell,” he said.
A Byzantine church located at the site is believed to be the the Church of the Apostles.
Lake Kinnaret is a freshwater lake, which in recent years has experienced record low water levels, threatening the area’s water supply and agricultural sector. This year the lake has reached a 16-year high, culminating in the flooding of adjacent areas.