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Russian Church of Mary Magdalene

With its seven golden onion domes and lavish 17th-century Muscovite style architecture, this is one of the most beautiful churches in Jerusalem. This church was built by Czar Alexander III in 1885. It commemorates the spot where Mary watched Jesus ascending to heaven. Today, it is a convent where 28 nuns live.

Inside, an impressive mosaic depicts a fascinating Mary Magdalene story. The legend is of a trip that Mary Magdalene took to Italy where she was spreading the word of Christ. She visited the Emperor Tiberias and gave him an egg as a symbol of Christ’s resurrection, saying the words “Christ is risen.” Tiberias countered that no one could rise from the dead just as the egg could not turn red. Miraculously, the egg turned red, a symbol of the blood of Jesus.

Saint Mary Magdalene then told Tiberias that Pilate had Jesus killed and asked that Pilate be removed from Jerusalem. Tiberias complied and had Pilate moved to Gaul where he later suffered an agonizing death.


Jesus of Nazareth Mary Magdalene: Mariamne Early Christianity
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