Holy Sepulchre


#1

Can someone please explain a couple things about the Church of the Holy Sepulchre? O.k, firstly, why in the world do the Greek Orthodox get to have a cathedral on the sight and the Catholics get only two small chapels- we’re a bigger Church NOT TO MENTION we have more influence in the Holy Land.
Second, can anyone give me some really good pictures of the Sepulchre (tomb) itself? I’ve been looking and couldn’t find.
Finally, is mass offered inside the actual tomb itself?
Thanks.

Oh ya, p.s: I have a cross with a relic that ‘touched the Holy Sepulchre’- where would it actually have touched within the tomb?


#2

The situation in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is due to an order issued by what was then the Ottoman Empire in 1852. Prior to that, control has been shifting between the Greeks and the Franciscans. The firman establishing the status quo froze the arrangement that was in place at that time, and has been in force since. Today, it is enforced by the Israeli police.

The Sepulchre itself is a common area, and the status quo regulates the time Divine Liturgies can be celebrated there by the various communities.

As for your cross, if it really “touched” the holy Sepulchre, it would have been a small section of stone covered by a small door in the wall across the marble slab within the inner chamber.


#3

you might want to do some research on the history of the Holy Land, we are lucky there is a Christian Church at all and not a mosque so count your blessings. there is no competition here (although fanatics from both wings of the church sometimes behave that way).


#4

The Jerusalem Patriarchate is Orthodox. When Rome split from the Church the other four Patriarchates at Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem and Constantinople remained as what has come to be known as the Orthodox Church. Your question makes about as much sense as an Orthodox asking why they don’t have a presence at St Peters at the Vatican.

Second, can anyone give me some really good pictures of the Sepulchre (tomb) itself? I’ve been looking and couldn’t find.

holyfire.org/eng/videoHS.htm


#5

Prodromos, it is clear that you are Orthodox. I say that the Catholic Church deseve a Cathedral their because they are the original Church, and, by that logic, did not separate from the Orthodox but visa virsa (don’t ge tme wrong, I hold in high esteem our Orthodox brethren.)
Also, can’t the arrangement set down by the Ottomans be changed. It really is unfair that they have such a large portion of this sacred site, isn’t it?


#6

Since the Byzantine Empire have had historically the more influcence in the Holy Land than the West (since it is in the Eastern part). Until 1187, the (Greek) Patriarch of Jerusalem lived in Constantinople itself. Our having larger members does not have anything to do with it, I think.

As for the firman, it would be difficult to change it without causing some trouble and disagreement amongst the different churches that also hold possession of the church (not just the Greeks, but others like the Coptics, Armenians, Syriacs and Ethiopians)

At least, we are lucky that we have a share in the Church of the Anastasis and that we have churches in the Holy Land at all.

Second, can anyone give me some really good pictures of the Sepulchre (tomb) itself? I’ve been looking and couldn’t find.

Here is a comprehensive site with the history of the Church itself, with lots of pictures:

www.christusrex.org/www1/jhs/TSspmenu.html

Finally, is mass offered inside the actual tomb itself?
Thanks.

No;

Oh ya, p.s: I have a cross with a relic that ‘touched the Holy Sepulchre’- where would it actually have touched within the tomb?


#7

Obviously I disagree with your statement that the Catholic Church is the original Church, but that is beside the point. The land on which these churches are built is owned by the Jerusalem Patriarchate. The Catholic Church can always build their churches on land that they own, it just wont be on the sacred sites.

Also, can’t the arrangement set down by the Ottomans be changed. It really is unfair that they have such a large portion of this sacred site, isn’t it?

The land is owned by the Jerusalem Patriarchate. If the agreement is dissolved all access will by default go to the Orthodox.

John


#8

It is not Orthodox land, actually, the Catholic crusaders have also ‘owned’ it. It is an ‘ecumenical’ church, if you will, and it is unfair that the Greek Orthodox get the lion’s share.

Also, I think you need to check your history becuase most historians are in agreement that we were first.


#9

Remember that there was not a ‘we and you’, but a ‘we=us’ situation back when the Church was not yet separated in Schism…and more likely when the Eastern and Western Churches reunite. Claiming that the Church is ‘ours’ is a bit tricky since the Byzantines apparently can also easily claim historical proof for it.

As for the Church, I do think that to be fair to each other, the Church of the Anastasis should be divided in equal portions for the Churches who has possession of it (Catholics, Greek Orthodox, Armenians, Syrians, Copts, Ethiopians): 100% divided by 6, plus designated pockets of ‘public zones’ where no particular group can lay claim (preferably the Aedicula can be such; if possible, also the Altar of Calvary).

As for the answer to one of your questions, the Greek Orthodox, Armenians and the Catholics (under the status quo) hold the rights to celebrate the Liturgy inside the Aedicula daily; the interior is also used for other ceremonies on special occasions, such as the ceremony of the Holy Fire by the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem. The Copts have an Altar at the rear of the Aedicula.


#10

I totally agree with everything in the previous post. Apologies for my seemingly negative attitude to our Orthodox brethren who are as Pope JP II would have it, ‘the eastern lung’ of the body of Christ.

I’m just curious about all of this because I’m going to Jerusalem this summer and, being 16, it is my first time. I am so exstatic!


#11

Good luck on your trip to Jerusalem. :thumbsup:


#12

Congratulations :slight_smile:
If you are able, see if you can get to the Monastery of St Savas. I have friends who have stayed there who never stop talking about it.

John


#13

Of course it is ‘fair’ for those who don’t have possession to decide to assign themselves a portion of that which is not theirs.:rolleyes: Perhaps you should consider who is the ultimate authority in control here and accept who He has deemed worthy to possess these holy places. Not that I consider we Orthodox remotely worthy of such abundant blessings, but who am I to argue with God. If you want a part in these holy places, you know who you need to talk to.

John


#14

Ah, the Great Lavra of St. Savvas (Mar Saba). The home of St. John of Damascus and the place the Typikon of St. Savvas came from, yes?

I would also really like to visit the Holy Land; 031064 should consider himself lucky for being able to visit it at so young an age (he’s a year older than me, by the way). :slight_smile:


#15

Apparently from the state of things, that would be the Ottoman Emperor. Or in lieu of him, the Israeli government.


#16

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