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The church of Pater Noster which in Latin means “Our Father” is situated in mount olives, Jerusalem. It is a Roman Catholic church built in the early 4th century, and it was known to be part of the sanctuary of the Eleona also known as Carmelite Monastery. Although, the lands on which both churches are built are known to belong to France formally, however, both are located in Jerusalem.

The church of Pater Noster was built to commemorate the ascension of Jesus Christ and also associated with when Jesus was teaching his disciples, the Lord’s Prayer (Mathew 6:9-14).

Most of the inhabitants of Al-Tur (where the church of Pater Noster is situated) are Muslims while Christians are a minority.

History of the Church

In the early 4th century, St. Helen mother of Constantine I along with her entourage, went on a visit to this Holy Land.

She was able to identify this place as an important place where the followers of Jesus gathered to listen to His teachings on the difference between Good and Evil (Matt. 24: 1-26:2).

The church was then built over a cave by St. Helen in the early 4th century.

Just like the other buildings located in Jerusalem, the church of Pater Noster was also a victim of the Persian’s destruction in 614.  However, the destruction doesn’t affect the importance of the teachings the building represents. There, the Lord’s Prayer can be found all around the walls and its vaulted cloister. The prayer was translated into 140 languages which have given it an edge for easy comprehension of its occupant.

In 1152, the church was later rebuilt by the funds gotten from Bishop of Denmark. The rebuilding features the inscription of the Lord’s Prayer on multilingual plaques. However, this doesn’t take long before it got damaged in 1345 and destroyed in 1851. As at then, the remaining stones of the church was sold as tombstones to the valley of Jehoshaphat.

Later in the second half of the 19th century, the church of Pater Noster was resuscitated by princess Princesse Aurelia Bossi de la Tour d’Auvergne. Then, she made a research about the whereabouts o the cave which she later found in 1868. In 1868, the princess built a cloistered modeled on the Campo Santo Risa.

Furthermore, the princess founded a Carmelite convent which was located at the east of Jerusalem.

The church was later reconstructed in 1915 following the discovery of cloisters seen beneath the cloisters. As a result of this, the cloisters were moved which gives room for the commencement of the Byzantine church.

Highlights of the Church

  • Although, the project is still unfinished, however, this doesn’t in any way affects its beauty as it gives you as a tourist the ample opportunity to the uniqueness of this amazing place.
  • You will find multiple tables carved into the wall with The Lord’s prayer written in 167 languges.

Therefore, if you’re thinking of the best place to go during your tour to Israel, the church of Pater Noster is one of the places you should try visiting. Not only is it known for its spiritual importance but also the perfect place to enjoy a serene environment.

Opening Hours

Mon – Sat

  • From 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM,
  • From 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM
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