Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Holy Sepulchre in the electronic age

Coming out of the Holy Sepulchre this afternoon I was shocked to see this man out on a ledge.

First I thought "Don't jump!" and second I thought "Don't break that ledge!"
Especially since the Crusaders built it a long time ago and because it looks this beautiful when you look up to the sky.
(Enlarge the photo to appreciate the stonework detail.)

Then I saw they were only stringing cable and preparing the church for the widescreen coverage of the many ceremonies to be held tomorrow.

Inside, too, men were putting down little ramps so the thousands of pilgrims will not trip over the cables tomorrow.
With a little LUCK the workers will finish all the preparations in time for the Orthodox Holy Thursday.

In the parvis, the entrance courtyard of the Holy Sepulchre, the dais has already been built.
The Greek Patriarch will rise from the red and gold chair and wash the feet of those seated on the two benches.
This in commemoration of Jesus' washing of his apostles' feet on that first Maundy Thursday.
According to the fine Holy Land Calendar of Christian Feasts & Events 2012 published by the Ministry of Tourism (which you can download in PDF !):

"Highlights of the feast in Jerusalem:
Washing of the Feet--
The Greek Patriarch in courtyard of the Holy Sepulchre.
The Head of the Franciscan Order in the Room of the Last Supper and later at the St. Savior Church.
The Latin Patriarch at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
Anglicans, Armenians, Copts, Syrians, and Ethiopians in their respective churches. "

And that is only the morning program!
Go to the calendar to see what will happen in the afternoon, evening and night time.
UPDATE: Haaretz now has 7 Reuters photos of the foot washing day at the Holy Sepulchre. Click here to see them.
Greek Orthodox Patriarch Theophilus III did indeed wash the feet of 12 of his clergymen, there on the platform I showed you.
UPDATE Oct. 2014: A video clip on the restoration and re-opening of the Chapel of the Franks.


Sara said...

It's certainly an exciting time to be in Jerusalem. Thank you for that calendar's a beautiful and very informative calendar.

Ann said...

Beautiful building that stonework is so intricate.

Rob and Mandy said...

As long as they don't fight.

Adullamite said...

I'm just amazed that they allowed work to be carried out on the roof! That must have taken years to arrange.

Good shots of the entrance and the work going on . Very interesting.

Dina said...

Rob, the monks have not had a brawl in a long time.

Adullamite, yes, I was amazed too. The Greeks control most of the roof.
See the story here:

Birdman said...

Very interesting... as always.

VP said...

I imagine it will be quite crowded...

Robert Geiss said...

oh what an adventure to look at. thank you for sharing very much.

katney said...

Oh, my! I almost hesitate to think what Holy Saturday will bring, as even here we go clear into 1:30 in Easter morning in order to have Easter Vigil in two languages.