Following Peter Through the Churches of Jaffa
Central Israel, though having little to do with the Christ himself, has much to do with his apostles and with the history of the church in the holy land at large. Jaffa, the ancient city that lies in the outskirts of Tel Aviv, is abundant with beautiful churches that commemorate the life of Peter the apostle, and offers a great Christian experience without having to travel far from Israel’s largest metropolitan. A trip to the beautiful, vibrant and historically significant Jaffa is always a pleaser, and nothing shows it quite better than a tour of the major churches of the city. So what are you expected to see? Read on to find out.
What to See
Church of Saint Peter: This Franciscan church lies at the northwestern part of the city and commemorates the spot in which Peter raised Tabitha from the dead, a proof of the power of Jesus’ disciples that he himself attributed to them. This church has a large beaconing tower that was used to signal to pilgrims that the holy land was near. Today, the beaconing tower is so famous it can be spotted in the symbol of the Tel Aviv Jaffa municipality. This church is beautiful both from within and from the outside, and is the pinnacle of churches in Jaffa.
Saint Nicholas Monastery, Jaffa: This church has been rebuilt in 1663 by the Armenian church on the remnants of an ancient religious site that dates to the earlier centuries of the first millennium A.C., which could have been one of the first Christian churches built in Israel. The monastery is said to have been built in the location of the house of Simon the Tanner, in which Peter slept and received the miracle of the dream, a vision in which he was instructed to teach the gentiles about the Christ. The modest yet impressive Church still stands in this location today, even though it had to survive an onslaught by Napoleon himself.
Mar Michael Church: A lovley Greek Orthodox church which is accessible only on Sunday, is a local Christian secret. This church is open only during the weekends, in which it holds masses and weddings. This church has an amazing view of the port of Jaffa, and is worth your time.
Attractions in the Area
Where to eat: Hands down, Abulafiya Bakery. This Bakery is considered by many to be the best in Israel, and offers pastry without equal. Location: Jeffet 7, Jaffa.
Where to stay: The haughty and comfortable Hotel Margoza is a favorite amongst the travelers of Jaffa. Location: Yehuda Margoza Street 7, Jaffa.
What to do: Even without the church, Jaffa is an incredible place to just walk around. Take some time and explore your environment or take a day tour, you will not be disappointed.