THE RE-OPENING OF THE CHURCH OF THE HOLY SEPULCHRE
The Church of the Holy Sepulchre was closed for all the pilgrims and visitors after the Liturgy of the Sunday of Orthodoxy, February 12/25, 2018 with the common decision of the Three Major Communities – Greek Orthodox, Franciscans and Armenians – in protest of the recent illegitimate tax measures imposed by the Jerusalem Municipality on the Churches of the Holy Land, as well as in protest against the proposed “Bill of Church lands”.
On Tuesday evening February 14/27, 2018, the Prime Minister of Israel Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu made the statement posted in the link below;
According to this statement, all actions from the municipality regarding the collection of taxes as well as all legislative activity on Church properties was suspended, including the “Bill of Church lands” proposed to the Knesset by Member of Knesset Rachel Azaria. There was also a decision to establish a professional team led by Minister Tzachi Hanegbi with the cooperation of the representatives of the Churches in order to solve the current crisis.
The Three Major Communities saw the action of Prime Minister Netanyahu, as constructive and agreed on the re-opening of the Gate of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre at 4.00 a.m. on Wednesday February 15/28, 2018.