On Wednesday, March 8th, the chapel of the Ascension, located at the top of the Mount of Olives, was damaged by a voluntary fire.
the media of the Custody of the Holy Land, in all likelihood, a car tire
may have been laid and burnt on the revered rock - kept inside the
chapel - where, according to a tradition dating from the early centuries
of Christianity, Jesus ascended to heaven.
The cabinet containing the
postcards and religious items sold by a Muslim family, was also damaged.
According to police, the incident may be related to a dispute between
two families linked to the holy place.
One person was allegedly arrested
The Chapel of the Ascension is one of the four shared holy places that
depend on the Statu Quo.
The status quo governs how the churches share
the use, it's space and time of use.
Of the four holy places, (the other
three are the Basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem, the Basilica of
the Resurrection in the Old City and the Tomb of the Virgin in the
Kidron Valley, near Gethsemane) this chapel is the only one under the
jurisdiction of the Waqf, that is the Muslim authority of the holy
The present chapel dates from the Crusaders period. It was built in the
place of a previous church destroyed in 614 by the Persians.
The holy place is also frequented by Muslims (who admit the Ascension of
Jesus into heaven, while denying his death on the cross and his