Posted by: Leap of Faith | December 6, 2009

Meryemana


I’ve heard many nice things about Turkey, specifically its capital, Istanbul.  Several friends who have been there before have attested that the place is just full of history – it lets you sample the rich culture of the West and the exotic flavour of the East.  Yes, Turkey is the only country that is located in both the European and Asian continents making it a great place for sightseers like us.

Unfortunately, as much as we would have wanted to see the place, including it in our cruise itinerary was a deal breaker since it would definitely throw us off our travel budget (i.e. we needed to get separate visas because we would stay in Turkey for more than 24 hours and we also had to extend our cruise by a few days, which all meant paying extra $$$).  Thankfully, despite missing out on its capital, we were still able to sample the beauty of this country through its coastal town, Kusadasi, which is located at its Aegean coast.

While there is not much to say about the resort town of Kusadasi, it’s biggest attraction is its proximity to the Meryemana (house of the Virgin Mary) and the ruins of the ancient city of Ephesus.

Per Wikipedia, “it is believed that after the crucifixion of Jesus, St. John left Jerusalem and came to Ephesus in order to convert its people to Christianity, as it was one of the biggest and safest non-Christian cities of its time (capital of the Asia Minor province of the Roman Empire). He then built a small hut to care for Mary just outside Ephesus in order to protect her from the largely Artemis worshipping community of the region”.  Time passed and the hut was seemingly lost forever until its ruin was discovered in 1881 using the visions of Anne Catherine Emmerich, a German nun.

Although the place is usually packed with hundreds of Christian and Muslim believers, our bus was very fortunate to arrive there first that day.  Because of this, we had no problems entering this holy site.

The  house was reconstructed on top of the original structure in the 1950’s to make it easier for pilgrims to visit the place.  Photography is not allowed inside the chapel, but the temptation to take a few shots was just so irresistable – sorry! – other people did it too…hehehe!

A simple altar dedicated to the Anne Catherine…

… and the main altar of the chapel.

Family photos at the exterior of the chapel.  I know I sound defensive but my hair looks so bad because I was wearing a cap… seriously… hehehe!

Finally, every pilgrimage site has to have one of these…Pinky and Rafael pose by the prayer board, which hangs outside the perimeter of the chapel.  The gross looking white thing in the background are the prayer request of the pilgrims (written mostly in tissue paper).  Hmm, I wonder what Pinky and Rafael prayed about?

This is all for now.  Next up are our photos of Ephesus… a must see.

 

 

 

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Responses

  1. Ephesus rocks!!! 😀 Would love to see the rest of Turkey someday…

    • Wow, thanks for giving me the title of my next blog entry!

      I’d love to see more of Turkey too… who knows, maybe one day we will get to travel there again.


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