DAILY CATHOLIC     THURSDAY     March 18, 1999     vol. 10, no. 54

NEWS & VIEWS
from a CATHOLIC perspective

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SIXTH CENTURY BYZANTINE CHURCH DISCOVERED IN HOLY LAND

          ROME, 17 (NE) A Byzantine church belonging to the mid sixth century has been recently discovered by archeologists in Gaza, Israel. Measuring 25 by 13 meters, foundations of the building were laid in 544, being completed by the year 550. This was affirmed by YaŽacov Huster, project archeologist, who began the search of the Christian temple based on testimony and photographs from the 1970s, when bits of mosaics were found during road work.

          Although a large part of mosaics covering the floor and the more than 1.500-year-old foundations of the church have been uncovered, excavations cannot be completed because of an Israeli army emplacement located on top of the remains. "The army can move such a small position", says Huster, who has already asked army officials to move it. But nothing has been done yet.

          According to the archeologist, the most impressive find until now is a mosaic found at the entrance to the church. The mosaic said the church was dedicated to Saint John the Baptist, stating the year construction began and ended. The inscription also praised those who donated money for the mosaic. Huster believes the church served a small village. Evidence suggests that the church was abandoned 80 years after its construction with Arab conquest in 634.


Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales. Both CWN and NE are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provides this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

March 18, 1999       volume 10, no. 54
NEWS & VIEWS

DAILY CATHOLIC

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