Book cover

Modern Christianity in the Holy Land

Jordan and Palestine in the Nineteenth Century


Development of the structure of the Churches and the growth of  Christian institutions in Jordan and Palestine; the Jerusalem Patriarchate, in the nineteenth century, in light of the Ottoman Firmans and the international relations of the Ottoman Sultanate





Front Cover


Madaba: A painting by Brazilian artist André Catelli(1) (1992). (The painting belongs to the Latin Vicariate, Amman, Jordan).


        The painting shows the Latin Church of Madaba, which was built in 1913 and the ruins of the Byzantine Church of the Virgin Mary from the sixth century. Christianity has planted its deep roots in our good soil ever since the Lord Jesus walked on its land. Today’s Churches are like flowers, which have grown from the roots of yesterday’s Churches.





Back cover


Jerusalem: A ceramic painting of Palestinian popular art.

        Jerusalem is The City, The Holy City, the City of Peace, Bayt Ul-Maqdis or the House of Holiness, the place of Divine revelations; it is the place of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and His ascension to Heaven. It is the home of Abraham and the convergence place of his Jewish, Christian and Muslim children. Jerusalem is the site of al-Isra’, or the Prophet Muhammad’s nocturnal journey from Mecca to Jerusalem. Jerusalem is the place where the children of Abraham have their minarets, tower bells and synagogues. Its golden walls are the symbol of their peace and wars, their pains and hopes, and their spiritual focus, Qibla, at the Day of Judgment.



Back cover text


“History of Modern Christianity in the Holy Land” is a modest contribution to the documentation of the history of our country. In the nineteenth century, the structure of the Churches underwent change. Christian institutions developed in light of the Ottoman firmans and the international relations forged by the Ottoman Sultanate. At that time, the systems of the millet, capitulation, international interests and the Eastern question were all interlocked in successive and complex events that occurred in the Ottoman arena. The development of the structure of the Churches had its local and international dimensions, which should be understood in order to comprehend the realities governing present-day Christianity. On the local level, the first law of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate was issued and the Orthodox Arab issue rose to the surface. Moreover, the Latin Patriarchate was re-established and the Anglican bishopric was formed. Most of these events occurred in Jerusalem and they necessarily reach out to the various parts of Palestine and Jordan.  They narrate the history of the patriarchates and the patriarchs and the local and international contacts, the institutions, schools, universities, seminaries, parishes and religious orders that developed during this historical period. This history is not restricted to the Churches, which constitute part of the civilization of our homeland and human civilization at large. Therefore, the study briefly touches on the public, political, social and economic life, the Christian-Muslim relations, the history of the clans, the ties that the neighboring countries forged with the Holy Land, and the pilgrimage to the Holy Places. This pilgrimage is one of the most prominent features of our country. The Lord has blessed this country with the monotheistic missions, which the Lord -God, Allah, Elohim- cleansed and chose outt of all other spots of the world for these missions. The sources and references of this book are diverse in terms of color, language and roots. They can take the reader at one time to Jerusalem, Karak, Nazareth, and Salt and at other times to Istanbul, Rome, London and Moscow. 

(1) André Catelli wrote:

30 de setembro de 1992

Pois bem, estávamos tão extasiados a explorar as preciosas ruínas por tantos séculos esquecidas no deserto, a contemplar a perfeição da pavimentação das ruas, com sarjetas, meios-fios e calçadas, a elegância dos templos e colunatas cujas cores esquentavam-se ao crepúsculo, que perdemos o último ônibus que saía para Amã, onde eu executava algumas pinturas para o Patriarcado de Jerusalém. Cliquem aqui para ver a capa do Livro History of Modern Christianity in the Holy Land, ilustrada com um óleo de minha autoria. Lê-se, no site: "Front Cover: Madaba: A painting by Brazilian artist André Catelli (1992). (The painting belongs to the Latin Vicariate, Amman, Jordan)". As cores estão mortas na reprodução. Cliquem aqui para ver a pintura com as cores originais. A torre contra o sol gera uma auréola na Igreja de Mádaba, cidade próxima ao Monte Nebo, camarote do qual Moisés imaginou com pesar os massacres do povo cananeu que se consumavam a poucos quilômetros. Com pesar por não ter sido autorizado a participar, claro. Quem mandou ferir a rocha duas vezes com a vara para que brotassem as águas de Meribá? ( )