Situated in a small tree-lined square near the basilica, Mary's Well is a functioning well that has been Nazareth's main water supply since ancient times. It is believed to be the well from which Mary and her young son Jesus regularly fetched water.
Nazareth is an Arab town with a population of 70,000 people...2/3 Muslim and 1/3 Christian, who are not necessarily believers! Although Nazareth was the home town of Jesus, sadly today there is not a big Christian witness there. People know about Jesus but they don't know him. The relationship between Muslims and Christians is calm at the moment, but there are tensions under the surface which often come to the surface. It's a pressure being a Christian there.
The basilica blessed by Pope Paul VI in 1964 while in construction, and consecrated by Cardinal Garrone on March 23, 1969, is the largest modern sacred building in Israel.
Off to the right is the Hill of the Precipitation.
Photo taken on the road from Tabor to Afula. Nazareth was on top of the mountain to the right. It extended behind the front ridge including behind the mountain where the road cut is. This mountain to the left is called Mount Precipice. According to tradition this is the place where the henchmen of Nazareth tried to put an end to Jesus' ministry. Luke 4:28-29: "All the people in the synagogue were filled with anger when they heard this. They rose up, dragged Jesus out of town, and took him to the top of the hill on which their town was built, to throw him over the cliff. But he walked through the middle of the crowd and went his way".
The nearby Church of St Joseph houses the remains of Crusader bas-reliefs, capitals and inscriptions found during the Church’s construction.
The Church of the Annunciation in Nazareth is one of the most important sites in the Christian world, constructed over the location of the Annunciation. The walls of the upper sanctuary are decorated with panels depicting scenes from the life of Mary that have been donated by Catholic communities from around the world.
Nazareth is one of the most important Christian holy sites attracting pilgrims from all over the world. It was here that Jesus spent most of his life and it was here that the Miracle of the Annunciation took place in the Grotto of the Virgin: This site is believed to be the place where the Angel announced to the Virgin Mary that she was to become a mother. The altar bears the inscription: “Verbum caro hic factum est – Here the Word was made flesh”. The copper baldachin over the grotto is of Belgian workmanship.
The sanctuary of the House of Mary in the basilica of the Annunciation, Nazareth
… Of the house itself, only remains what has been hewn in the rock, where a simple chapel has been installed. Under the flower-covered altar is written in Latin “Here the Word was made flesh”.
Designed by the architect Giovanni Muzio, the present Basilica of the Annunciation is built on two levels. The upper level follows the outline of the 12th-century Crusader- cathedral (a nave, flanked by two aisles), and partly reconstructs the eastern apses. The lower level enshrines the Byzantine grotto.
Nazareth: City of Jesus. “The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin... and the virgin’s name was Mary... and he came to her and said. Hail, O favored one, the Lord is with you!.. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.” - Luke 1:26-32.
On the main facade of the basilica is written: "Verbum caro factum est et habitavit in nobis - The Word was made flesh and has lived among us".
Nazareth is one of the most important Christian holy sites in the world, and has long been a special haven for Christian pilgrims. The city has a unique mixture of European and Middle Eastern ambiance as can be seen in its architecture, which is a combination of Gothic or Neoclassical style with typical Middle Eastern style. Its Arab population is renowned for their warm hospitality and exotic food.
The large Basilica of the Assumption, built in 1969, overlooks the Nazareth landscape. According to Catholics, the basilica marks the site of Mary's house and the Annunciation (when the angel Gabriel announced to Mary that she would bear the Savior). Inside are remains of earlier structures, including the Grotto of the Annunciation, mosaics and sculptures.
Nazareth which lays in the lower Galilee not far from the lake of the Sea of Galilee, is a small city of mainly modern appearance. It is a mix of races and religions. A large town in the Arab part of Israel, it is an important Christian locality. As the site of the Angel's Annunciation to the Virgin Mary and the place where Jesus spent most of his life, it has attracted Christian pilgrims for the last 1,500 years.
Nazareth is home to both Christians and Muslims (the largest Arab population left in Israel) and is a quaint amalgamation of red roofs and white churches dotted along the slopes of the Galilean hillside. Breathtaking views can be enjoyed from the summit, which looks out onto the Jezreel Valley. A large town in the Arab part of Israel, it is an important Christian locality. As the site of the Angel's Annunciation to the Virgin Mary and the place where Jesus spent most of his life, it has attracted Christian pilgrims for the last 1,500 years.
A real visit to Nazareth is much more than just a tour of the Old City. One of the basic rules for understanding Nazareth is to get to know its surrounding landscape: a horsehoe-shaped alley whose concave side faces the Jezreel Valley. At one end of the horseshoe, on the open side, a large cliff steeply drops down to the valley's fields.
Sundial at a roadcrossing in Cana
For the last 1400 years at least, Christians have remembered the first miracle of Jesus at a village called Cana, low on the northern slope of the Nazareth ridge. There are three churches. The largest is Franciscan, built on the ruins of a building (synagogue?) from the 4th or 5th centuries AD, when one of the 24 major divisions of Jewish priests lived here. In the middle aisle below a glass panel, we can see a mosaic inscription from this building mentioning a donor. The monks show a jar revered as one of the six that held the water-become-wine. The Greek Orthodox across the street show another two. To the north is the Greek Catholic church of Nathanael, who hailed from Cana.
Nearby, in Anwas (Emmaus) in the vicinity of Latrun, ruins of a Byzantine church.
The walls of the upper church are covered with images of Mary from all over the world.
In the lower church can be seen the Grotto of the Annunciation. Its altar bears the inscription "Verbum caro hic factum est" (The Word was made flesh here). The copper baldachin over the grotto is of Belgian workmanship.
In Nazareth, the old Franciscan church built in 1730, was pulled down in 1955 to make way for a new one, Israel' largest sacred building in recent decades. This fifth church, consecrated on March 23, 1969 by Cardinal Garrone, is the most important modern church building in Israel.
Nazareth is the largest Arab city in Israel with a population of 60,000 both Christians and Muslims – who live together in harmony. Its special geographic location between the open space of the Jezreel valley and the mountainous regions of the Galilee makes it a perfect base for Galilee region tourism. Nazareth is one of the most important Christian holy sites in the world, and has long been a special haven for Christian pilgrims. The city has a unique mixture of European and Middle Eastern ambiance as can be seen in its architecture, which is a combination of Gothic or Neoclassical style with typical Middle Eastern style. The Arab population is renowned for they warm hospitality and exotic food. The Baklawah, the traditional Arab sweet of Nazareth is sold on almost every corner.