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Church of All Nations, Jerusalem

Photo © HolyLandPhotos. View all images in our Church of All Nations Photo Gallery.
Photo © Bettina & Dominique Zygmont.
Jerusalem Photo © WomEOS.
Jerusalem Photo © WomEOS.
Jerusalem Photo © WomEOS.
Photo © Bettina & Dominique Zygmont.

The Church of All Nations, officially named the Basilica of the Agony, is located at the foot of the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem next to the Garden of Gethsemane. The Catholic church enshrines a section of stone in the Garden of Gethsemane that is believed to be where Jesus prayedon the night of his arrest (Matthew 26:36).

In the Bible

Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, "Sit here while I go over there and pray." He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled.

Then he said to them, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me."

Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will."

--Matthew 26:36-39
History

The modern church stands on the foundations of two ancient churches: a 4th-century Byzantine basilica, destroyed by an earthquake in 746 and a 12th-century Crusader chapel, which was abandoned in 1345.

The Basilica of the Agony was built from 1919-24 with funding from 12 different countries, which gave it its nickname: "the Church of All Nations."

What to See

The domed roof, thick pillars, and floor mosaic give the church a Byzantine appearance. The architect of the building was Antonio Barluzzi, who also designed the nearby Dominus Flevit Church. The front of the church features a colorful façade supported by a row of pillars. The mosaic above the entrance depicts Christ as the link between God and humanity.

Inside, the symbols of each country that contributed to the church are incorporated into the inlaid gold ceilings of each of 12 cupolas. The 12 cupolas rest on six monolithic pillars.

The basilica's three aisles culminate in three apses at the east end, which are decorated with mosaics depicting biblical events in the Garden of Gethsemane. In the center, the high altar overlooks a large slab of rock, which is said to be the very rock on which Jesus prayed in agony on the night of his betrayal.

The Church of All Nations is run by the Franciscans, but an open altar in the garden is used by the Anglican community on Maundy Thursday (the day before Good Friday).

Quick Facts on the Church of All Nations

Site Information
Names:Basilica of the Agony; Basilica of the Agony of the Lord; Church of All Nations; Church of All Nations, Jerusalem
City:Jerusalem
Country:Israel & Palestine
Categories:Biblical Sites; Churches
Faiths:Christianity; Catholic; Franciscan
Feat:Footsteps of Jesus
Styles:Neo-Byzantine
Dates:1919-24
Status:active
Visitor and Contact Information
Location:Jerusalem,
Coordinates:31.779246° N, 35.239624° E  (view on Google Maps)
Lodging:View hotels near this location
Note: This information was accurate when first published and we do our best to keep it updated, but details such as opening hours can change without notice. To avoid disappointment, please check with the site directly before making a special trip.

Map of the Church of All Nations

Below is a location map and aerial view of the Church of All Nations. Using the buttons on the left (or the wheel on your mouse), you can zoom in for a closer look, or zoom out to get your bearings. To move around, click and drag the map with your mouse.

References

  1. Basilica of the Agony of the Lord - WGuides
  2. The Basilica of the Agony - Church of All Nations - Israel Ministry of Tourism
  3. Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations - Atlas Tours
  4. The Church of All Nations - Virtual Tourist user reviews
  5. Mount of Olives - BiblePlaces.com

More Information

Article Info

Title:Church of All Nations, Jerusalem
Author:Holly Hayes
Last updated:02/20/2010
Permalink:www.sacred-destinations.com/israel/jerusalem-church-of-all-nations
Link code:<a href="http://www.sacred-destinations.com/israel/jerusalem-church-of-all-nations">Church of All Nations, Jerusalem</a>