Legendary Tomb of Jesus Resurrected

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After centuries of disrepair, one of Christianity’s holiest sites returns to life.

  • Renovation of Edicule completed
  • Complete transformation of monument
  • Tomb resurrected just in time for celebration of Christ’s resurrection
  • Jordan’s King Abdullah II contributed towards $4m funding

After centuries of disrepair, one of Christianity’s holiest sites returns to life.

A Greek restoration team has completed its renovation of the Edicule where, according to Christian tradition, Jesus was buried after his crucifixion. The timing is perfect, as Easter – celebrating the resurrection of Christ – is just around the corner.

In a report by The Christian Science Monitor, centuries-long cycles of ruin and restoration had afflicted the structure. An ongoing dispute between the religious groups controlling the site had brought the burial place to the brink of collapse. And it took a warning from Israeli authorities that the building was becoming unsafe to prompt the controlling groups to set aside their differences and allow proper repairs to proceed.

Believed by the devout to house the tomb of Jesus Christ, Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre opens to the public today, after nearly a year of restoration.

Bonnie Burnham of the World Monuments Fund told CBS. “This is a complete transformation of the monument.”

“It will be a long scientific analysis, but we will finally be able to see the original rock surface on which, according to tradition, the body of Christ was laid,” said Fredrik Hiebert, archaeologist-in-residence at the National Geographic Society, a partner in the restoration project.

Dr Hiebert refers to one target of intense interest, the limestone shelf where Christ’s body was brought after his crucifixion in 30 AD, according to Christian tradition. Followers who came to the tomb three days later found it empty after his resurrection.

Starting today, for the first time in centuries, tourists and pilgrims will be able to follow in the footsteps of the early Christians, seeing the interior of the holy site with their own eyes.

The funding of the USD4 million renovation included a personal gift from Jordan’s King Abdullah II. Despite centuries of conflict, some see seeds of peace in this cooperation wrought of necessity.