Introducing a series sharing Life in the times of Jesus from here in the Holy Land.
For generations pilgrims have looked to the pastures east of Bethlehem to find the location of the Shepherds’ Field, where the first people on earth received the good news of the
Birth of Christ.
Since no one location is universally accepted, various sites carry the title.
Many churches have been built in the area – one mosaic floor from Byzantine times can be seen in the Shepherds’ Field church in the village of Beit Shahour.
In the grounds of the Franciscan Chapel excavations have revealed the ruins of an agrarian monastic center, with cisterns, silos and presses. Inhabited as far back as Herodian times, it had its heyday around the 6th century. The first church built here dates from the 4th or 5th century, and inscriptions upon the remains of two altars prove the enduring nature of the site’s sacred character.
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