St. George's Monastery, Al-Khader

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The Saint George's Monastery (Arabic: دير القديس جاورجيوس‎‎) is an Eastern Orthodox Christian monastery in the Palestinian town of al-Khader in the central West Bank.

History[edit]

In 1863, Victor Guérin noted "As for the convent or Deir ei-Khadher, it is not very considerable and does not seem so old. It is administered by a single religious Greek, assisted by two brothers and a few servants. A small number of narrow cells are reserved for foreigners. A solid, iron-clad door gives access to the interior of the cloister."[1]

The modern church was built in 1912 but the remains of the chapel date back to the 16th century. The edifice has an Eastern Orthodox interior, and the dome contains a portrait of Christ Pantocrator. During the Ottoman rule of Palestine, some rooms were constructed in the convent to house the mentally ill.[2]

Since the priest in al-Khader was the only Christian inhabitant of the town, Saint George's Monastery attracted al-Khader's Muslims. During the Feast of Saint George in early June, the bridle of Saint George's horse would pass over the bodies of visitors to prevent or cure any mental illness, for which Saint George was renowned. In the 19th century, the site became a clinic for the mentally ill.[3]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Guérin, 1869, pp. 310-312
  2. ^ El-Khader - Bethlehem This Week in Palestine
  3. ^ St. George's Monastery Centre for the Preservation of Culture and History.

Bibliography[edit]

Coordinates: 31°42′13″N 35°9′41″E / 31.70361°N 35.16139°E / 31.70361; 35.16139