Christ Church in Jerusalem

Christ Church is found in Jerusalem’s Old City. It is the oldest Protestant church in the Middle East. Christ Church is considered as the heart of prayer and worship for all people.  Religious people and pilgrims come to this place to encounter the kingdom of Heaven.  Three architects are responsible for the design of the church.  The 1st one was William Curry Hillier in August 1840, followed by James Wood Johns, who was later fired.  Matthew Habershon took his place in January 1843. In 1849, the building was finally finished.

The Ottoman empire took over the lands in the 19th century. The Church of England acquired the land where Christ Church was created near Jerusalem’s Jaffa Gate in 1833.  Christ Church was built with the scheme to gain converts; hence, the church was put up with a replica of a synagogue.  In constructing the Neo-Gothic edifice, stone masons from Malta were transported. The frontage of the wall does not hold any obvious Christian symbols.   No crosses are seen inside the church.  Stars of David, Menorahs, engravings of the words of Jesus and the Apostles Creed in Hebrew on the eastern wall and other Jewish iconography are the only symbols that are overt.

Christ Church was attacked in 1948 during the Arab-Israeli war by the Jordanian army.  They presumed it was a synagogue.  The rector Rev Hugh Jones immediately went to the bazaar to buy an olive wood cross to put on the communion table just to prove that it was certainly a Christian Church.

At present, Christ Church operates in Anglican services in mainly three languages, Arabic, Hebrew and English.  Visitors who are interested to visit the church will no longer have difficulty in finding a place to stay since it has a guesthouse with an affordable price.

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