Archive for the ‘Churches’ Category

An Unusual Arrangement for a Church Key
November 27, 2018

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem is one of the holiest sites of The Christian faith. Many believe that this is the location where Jesus was crucified and buried.

Church of Holy Sepulchre 1

Church of Holy Sepulchre 2

The third photo above shows visitors entering the memorial structure inside the church, a memorial built over the spot where traditions says that Jesus was buried.

I have visited this Church several times, but only recently did I learn the unusual story of the key.

The key to this world-famous Christian Church is held by a Muslim man and his family, and it has been in his family for centuries.

This began in the early 600s, when Umar ibn Khattab was the second caliph (chief civil and religious leader) of the Muslims. He met in Jerusalem with the Christian Patriarch Sophronius and made an agreement granting Christians right to worship in Jerusalem. Since many Christian denominations wanted to worship at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Umar entrusted the church’s key to a Muslim family for safe keeping.

Actually, the arrangement involves two Muslim families. One family holds the key and carries it to the Church doors every day. A man from another Muslim family uses the key to open the doors. The same process happens every evening to close the doors.

You can learn further details about this arrangement by going online to: key to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.