The Church of the Holy Sepulchre…the site of Jesus Christ’s crucifixion, death, burial, and resurrection. Today I got a chance to wander through the much-smaller-than-the-Muslim-and-Jewish Christian Quarter of the Old City. Being a few days before Easter, the place was abuzz with people; the huge church echoes with a thousand voices in a hundred languages.
Upon walking in, you see people kneeling down and kissing a marble slab, the Stone of Anoiting, that is being constantly wiped down and sanitized by church workers. This was the place were Jesus, after his crucifixion, was cleaned and robed before his entombment.
The Aedicule, the massive structure that houses the tomb of Jesus Christ, sits underneath the airy Rotunda. A small shaft in the upper ceiling illuminates the thick darkness that is otherwise penetrated only by candlelight. As with the Western Wall, I got chills thinking that I was only feet away from someone that vastly changed human history. I can’t see how anyone, religious or not, could not help feeling the same.
- The Romanesque (though this was built FAR before the Romans) entrance to the Christian Quarter.
- Signage about entering the church plaza
- The main entrance to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the holiest site in Christianity (my camera decided it wanted to experiment with some odd “fishbowl” lens setting, so sorry if it’s a little squished-looking)
- Police + Colombian tourists + crosses = ?
- Eight lamps illuminate the Stone of Anointing.
- People kiss the Stone of Anointing, the place where Joseph of Arimathea buried Jesus’ body for burial.
- The spot where Mary watched the Crucifixion, called the Mourning Place
- Jesus’ tomb, the Aedicule, sits beneath the late afternoon sun from the might Rotunda.
- The entrance to the Aedicule
- People kneel and kiss the Altar of Crucifixion, believed to the be site of the Crucifixion