A shrine is a holy or sacred place, dedicated to a specific deity, hero, saint, daemon, or similar figure of awe and respect, at which they are venerated or worshipped. Shrines contain idols, relics, or other such objects associated with the figure being venerated. A shrine at which votive offerings are made is called an altar. Shrines are found in many of the world's religions, including Christianity, Hinduism, Chinese folk religion and Asatru as well as in secular and non-religious settings such as a war memorial. Shrines can be found in various settings, such as churches, cemeteries, museums, or in the home, although portable shrines are found in some cultures. A shrine may become a focus of a cult image. Many shrines are located within buildings and in the temples designed for worship, such as a church in Christianity, or a mandir in Hinduism. A shrine here is the centre of attention in the building, is given a place of prominence. In such cases, adherents of the faith assemble within the building in order to venerate the deity at the shrine.
In classical temple architecture, the shrine may be synonymous with the cella. In Hinduism and Roman Catholicism, in modern faiths, such as Neopaganism, a shrine can be found within the home or shop; this shrine is a small structure or a setup of pictures and figurines dedicated to a deity, part of the official religion, to ancestors or to a localised household deity. Small household shrines are common among the Chinese and people from South and Southeast Asia, whether Hindu, Buddhist or Christian. A small lamp and small offerings are kept daily by the shrine. Buddhist household shrines must be on a shelf above the head. Small outdoor yard shrines are found at the bottom of many peoples' gardens, following various religions, including Christianity. Many consist of a statue of Christ or a saint, on a pedestal or in an alcove, while others may be elaborate booths without ceilings, some include paintings and architectural elements, such as walls, glass doors and ironwork fences, etc. In the United States, some Christians have small yard shrines.
Religious images in some sort of small shelter, placed by a road or pathway, sometimes in a settlement or at a crossroads. Shrines are found in many religions; as distinguished from a temple, a shrine houses a particular relic or cult image, the object of worship or veneration. A shrine may be constructed to set apart a site, thought to be holy, as opposed to being placed for the convenience of worshippers. Shrines therefore attract the practice of pilgrimage. Shrines are found in many, forms of Christianity. Roman Catholicism, the largest denomination of Christianity, has many shrines, as do Orthodox Christianity and Anglicanism. In the Roman Catholic Code of Canon law, canons 1230 and 1231 read: "The term shrine means a church or other sacred place which, with the approval of the local Ordinary, is by reason of special devotion frequented by the faithful as pilgrims. For a shrine to be described as national, the approval of the Episcopal Conference is necessary. For it to be described as international, the approval of the Holy See is required."Another use of the term "shrine" in colloquial Catholic terminology is a niche or alcove in most – larger – churches used by parishioners when praying in the church.
They were called Devotional Altars, since they could look like small Side Altars or bye-altars. Shrines were always centered on some image of Christ or a saint – for instance, a statue, mural or mosaic, may have had a reredos behind them. However, Mass would not be celebrated at them. Side altars, where Mass could be celebrated, were used in a similar way to shrines by parishioners. Side altars were dedicated to The Virgin Mary, Saint Joseph as well as other saints. A nativity set could be viewed as a shrine, as the definition of a shrine is any holy or sacred place. Islam's holiest structure, the Kaaba in the city of Mecca, though an ancient temple, may be seen as a shrine due to it housing a venerated relic called the Hajar al-Aswad and being the focus of the world's largest pilgrimage practice, the Hajj. A few yards away, the mosque houses the Maqam Ibrahim shrine containing a petrosomatoglyph associated with the patriarch and his son Ishmael's building of the Kaaba in Islamic tradition; the Green Dome sepulcher of the Islamic prophet Muhammad in Medina, housed in the Masjid an-Nabawi, occurs as a venerated place and important as a site of pilgrimage among Muslims.
Two of the oldest and notable Islamic shrines are the Dome of the Rock and the smaller Dome of the Chain built on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The former was built over the rock that marked the site of the Jewish Temple and according to Islamic tradition, was the point of departure of Muhammad's legendary ascent heavenwards. More than any other shrines in the Muslim world, the tomb of Muhammad is considered a source of blessings for the visitor. Among sayings attributed to
Museo del Prado
The Prado Museum is the main Spanish national art museum, located in central Madrid. It is considered to have one of the world's finest collections of European art, dating from the 12th century to the early 20th century, based on the former Spanish Royal Collection, the single best collection of Spanish art. Founded as a museum of paintings and sculpture in 1819, it contains important collections of other types of works. El Prado is one of the most visited sites in the world, it is considered one of the greatest art museums in the world; the numerous works by Francisco Goya, the single most extensively represented artist, as well as by Hieronymus Bosch, El Greco, Peter Paul Rubens and Diego Velázquez, are some of the highlights of the collection. The collection comprises around 8,200 drawings, 7,600 paintings, 4,800 prints, 1,000 sculptures, in addition to a large number of other works of art and historic documents; as of 2012, the museum displayed about 1,300 works in the main buildings, while around 3,100 works were on temporary loan to various museums and official institutions.
The remainder were in storage. The museum received 2.8 million visitors in 2012. It is one of the largest museums in Spain; the best-known work on display at the museum is Las Meninas by Velázquez. Velázquez and his keen eye and sensibility were responsible for bringing much of the museum's fine collection of Italian masters to Spain, now the largest outside Italy; the museum is planning a 16% extension in the nearby Salón de Reinos, to be opened in 2019. The building, now the home of the Museo Nacional del Prado was designed in 1785 by architect of the Enlightenment in Spain Juan de Villanueva on the orders of Charles III to house the Natural History Cabinet. Nonetheless, the building's final function was not decided until the monarch's grandson, Ferdinand VII, encouraged by his wife, Queen María Isabel de Braganza, decided to use it as a new Royal Museum of Paintings and Sculptures; the Royal Museum, which would soon become known as the National Museum of Painting and Sculpture, subsequently the Museo Nacional del Prado, opened to the public for the first time in November 1819.
It was created with the double aim of showing the works of art belonging to the Spanish Crown and to demonstrate to the rest of Europe that Spanish art was of equal merit to any other national school. The first catalogue of the Museum, published in 1819 and devoted to Spanish painting, included 311 paintings, although at that time the Museum housed 1,510 from the various royal residences, the Reales Sitios, including works from other schools; the exceptionally important royal collection, which forms the nucleus of the present-day Museo del Prado, started to increase in the 16th century during the time of Charles V and continued under the succeeding Habsburg and Bourbon monarchs. Their efforts and determination led to the Royal Collection being enriched by some of the masterpieces now to be seen in the Prado; these include The Descent from the Cross by Rogier van der Weyden, The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymous Bosch, Knight with his Hand on his Breast by El Greco, The Death of the Virgin by Mantegna, The Holy Family, known as "La Perla", by Raphael, Charles V at Mülhberg by Titian, Christ Washing the Disciples’ Feet by Tintoretto, Dürer's Self-portrait, Las Meninas by Velázquez, The Three Graces by Rubens, The Family of Charles IV by Goya.
In addition to works from the Spanish royal collection, other holdings increased and enriched the Museum with further masterpieces, such as the two Majas by Goya. Among the now closed museums whose collections have been added to that of the Prado were the Museo de la Trinidad in 1872, the Museo de Arte Moderno in 1971. In addition, numerous legacies and purchases have been of crucial importance for the growth of the collection. Various works entered the Prado from the Museo de la Trinidad, including The Fountain of Grace by the School of Van Eyck, the Santo Domingo and San Pedro Martír altarpieces painted for the monastery of Santo Tomás in Ávila by Pedro Berruguete, the five canvases by El Greco executed for the Colegio de doña María de Aragón. Most of the Museum's 19th-century paintings come from the former Museo de Arte Moderno, including works by the Madrazos, José de Madrazo y Agudo and Federico de Madrazo, Vicente López, Carlos de Haes, Eduardo Rosales and Sorolla. Upon the deposition of Isabella II in 1868, the museum was nationalized and acquired the new name of "Museo del Prado".
The building housed the royal collection of arts, it proved too small. The first enlargement to the museum took place in 1918. Since the creation of the Museo del Prado more than 2,300 paintings have been incorporated into its collection, as well as a large number of sculptures, prints and works of art through bequests and purchases, which account for most of the New Acquisitions. Numerous bequests have enriched the Museum's holdings, such as the outstanding collection of medals left to the Museum by Pablo Bosch. Important donations include Barón Emile d'Erlanger's gift of Goya's Black Paintings in 1881. Among the numerous works that have entered the collection through purchase are some outstanding ones acquired in recent years including two works by El Greco, The Fable and The Flight into Egypt acquired in 1993 and 2001, Goya's Countess of Chinchón bought in 2000, Velázquez's portrait of The Pope's Barber, acquired in 2003 and Fra Angelico's Madonna of the Pomegranate purchased in 2016. Between 1873
Western Christianity is the Latin Church, Protestantism, together with the offshoots of these such as independent Catholicism and Restorationist churches taken together. The large majority of the world's 2.4 billion Christians are Western Christians. The original and still major part, the Latin Church, developed under the bishop of Rome in the former Western Roman Empire in Antiquity. Out of the Latin Church emerged a wide variety of independent Protestant denominations, including Lutheranism and Anglicanism, starting from the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century, as did Independent Catholicism in the 19th century. Thus, the term "Western Christianity" does not describe a single communion or religious denomination, but is applied to distinguish all these denominations collectively from Eastern Christianity; the establishment of the distinct Latin Church, a particular church sui iuris of the Catholic Church coincided with the consolidation of the Holy See in Rome, where the bishop claimed a particular role since Antiquity.
The terms "Western" and "Eastern" in this regard originated with geographical divisions mirroring the cultural divide between the Hellenistic east and Latin West, the political divide between the Western and Eastern Roman empires. During the Middle Ages adherents of the Latin Church, irrespective of ethnicity referred to themselves as "Latins" to distinguish themselves from Eastern Christians. With the expansion of European colonialism from the Early Modern era, the Latin Church, in time along with its Protestant secessions, spread throughout the Americas, much of the Philippines, Southern Africa, pockets of West Africa, throughout Australia, New Zealand. Thus, when used for historical periods after the 16th century, the term "Western Christianity" does not refer to a particular geographical area, but is rather used as a collective term for the Latin Church, the Protestant denominations, Independent Catholicism that trace their lineage to the original Latin Church in Western Europe. Today, the geographical distinction between Western and Eastern Christianity is not nearly as absolute as in Antiquity or the Middle Ages, due to the spread of Christian missionaries and globalisation.
The adjectives "Western Christianity" and "Eastern Christianity" are used to refer to historical origins and differences in theology and liturgy, rather than present geographical locations. While the Latin Church maintain the Latin liturgical rites, Protestant denominations and Independent Catholicism retain a wide variety of liturgical practices. For most of its history the church in Europe has been culturally divided between the Latin-speaking west, whose centre was Rome, the Greek-speaking east, whose centre was Constantinople. Cultural differences and political rivalry created tensions between the two churches, leading to disagreement over doctrine and ecclesiology and to schism. Like Eastern Christianity, Western Christianity traces its roots directly to the apostles and other early preachers of the religion. In Western Christianity's original area Latin was the principal language. Christian writers in Latin had more influence there than those who wrote in Greek, Syriac, or other Eastern languages.
Though the first Christians in the West used Greek, by the fourth century Latin had superseded it in the cosmopolitan city of Rome, while there is evidence of a Latin translation of the Bible in the 2nd century in southern Gaul and the Roman province of Africa. With the decline of the Roman Empire, distinctions appeared in organization, since the bishops in the West were not dependent on the Emperor in Constantinople and did not come under the influence of the Caesaropapism in the Eastern Church. While the see of Constantinople became dominant throughout the Emperor's lands, the West looked to the see of Rome, which in the East was seen as that of one of the five patriarchs of the Pentarchy, "the proposed government of universal Christendom by five patriarchal sees under the auspices of a single universal empire. Formulated in the legislation of the emperor Justinian I in his Novella 131, the theory received formal ecclesiastical sanction at the Council in Trullo, which ranked the five sees as Rome, Alexandria and Jerusalem."Over the centuries, disagreements separated Western Christianity from the various forms of Eastern Christianity: first from East Syriac Christianity after the Council of Ephesus from that of Oriental Orthodoxy after the Council of Chalcedon, from Eastern Orthodoxy with the East-West Schism of 1054.
With the last-named form of Eastern Christianity, reunion agreements were signed at the Second Council of Lyon and the Council of Florence, but these proved ineffective. The rise of Protestantism led to major divisions within Western Christianity, which still persist, wars—for example, the Anglo-Spanish War of 1585–1604 had religious as well as economic causes. In and after the Age of Discovery, Europeans spread Western Christianity to the New World and elsewhere. Roman Catholicism came to the Americas, Asia and the Pacific. Protestantism, including Anglicanism, came to North America, Australia-Pacific and some African locales. Today, the geographical distinction between Western and Eastern Christianity is now much less absolute, due to the great migrations of Europeans across the globe, as well as the work of missionaries worldwide over the past five centuries. Although "original sin" can be taken to mea
Oriental Orthodoxy is the fourth largest communion of Christian churches, with about 76 million members worldwide. As one of the oldest religious institutions in the world, it has played a prominent role in the history and culture of Armenia, Eritrea, Ethiopia and parts of the Middle East and India. An Eastern Christian communion of autocephalous churches, its bishops are equal by virtue of episcopal ordination, its doctrines can be summarised in that the communion recognizes the validity of only the first three ecumenical councils; the Oriental Orthodox communion is composed of six autocephalous churches: the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, the Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch, the Armenian Apostolic Church, the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church, the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church. Collectively, they consider themselves to be the One, Holy and Apostolic church founded by Jesus Christ in his Great Commission, that its bishops are the successors of Christ's apostles.
Most member churches are part of the World Council of Churches. All member churches share a identical theology, with the distinguishing feature being Miaphysitism. Three different rites are practiced in the communion: the western-influenced Armenian Rite, the West Syrian Rite of the two Syriac churches, the Alexandrian Rite of the Copts and Eritreans. At the Council of Chalcedon in 451 AD, the Oriental Orthodox churches separated from the Imperial Roman Church over differences in Christology. Oriental Orthodoxy developed distinctively under the Patriarchate of Alexandria in Egypt part of the Pentarchy, the only episcopal see besides the Holy See to maintain the title "Pope"; the majority of Oriental Orthodox Christians live in Egypt, Ethiopia and Armenia, with smaller Syriac communities living in the Middle East–decreasing due to persecution–and India. There are many in other parts of the world, formed through diaspora and missionary activity; the Oriental Orthodox churches are distinguished by their recognition of only the first three ecumenical councils during the period of the State church of the Roman Empire –the First Council of Nicaea in 325, the First Council of Constantinople in 381 and the Council of Ephesus in 431.
Oriental Orthodoxy shares much theology and many ecclesiastical traditions with the Eastern Orthodox Church. The primary theological difference between the two communions is the differing Christology. Oriental Orthodoxy rejects the Chalcedonian Definition, instead adopts the Miaphysite formula, believing that the human and divine natures of Christ are united; the early prelates of the Oriental Orthodox churches thought that the Chalcedonian Definition implied a possible repudiation of the Trinity or a concession to Nestorianism. Other differences include minor deviations in social teaching and different views on ecumenism. Oriental Orthodox churches are considered to be more conservative with regard to social issues as well more enthusiastic about ecumenical relations with non-Orthodox churches; the break in communion between the Imperial Roman and Oriental Orthodox churches did not occur but rather over 2-3 centuries following the Council of Chalcedon. The two communions developed separate institutions, the Oriental Orthodox did not participate in any of the ecumenical councils.
The Oriental Orthodox churches maintain their own ancient apostolic succession. The various churches are governed by holy synods, with a primus inter pares bishop serving as primate; the primates hold titles like patriarch and pope. Among these patriarchs, the Pope of Alexandria takes precedence, is sometimes considered the "face" of Oriental Orthodoxy; the Alexandrian Patriarchate, along with Rome and Antioch, was one of the most prominent sees of the early Christian Church, contains a majority population of Coptic Christians, unlike Antioch is still a major population center. That said, the Pope of Alexandria has no governing powers with respect to the non-Coptic churches. Oriental Orthodoxy does not have a magisterial leader like the Roman Catholic Church, nor does the communion have a leader who can convene ecumenical synods like the Eastern Orthodox Church; the schism between Oriental Orthodoxy and the adherents of Chalcedonian Christianity was based on differences in Christology. The First Council of Nicaea, in 325, declared that Jesus Christ is God, to say, "consubstantial" with the Father.
The third ecumenical council, the Council of Ephesus, declared that Jesus Christ, though divine as well as human, is only one being, or person. Thus, the Council of Ephesus explicitly rejected Nestorianism, the Christological doctrine that Christ was two distinct beings, one divine and one human, who happened to inhabit the same body; the churches that became Oriental Orthodoxy were anti-Nestorian, therefore supported the decisions made at Ephesus. Twenty years after Ephesus, the Council of Chalcedon reaffirmed the view that Jesus Christ was a single person, but at the same time declared that this one person existed "in two complete natures", one human and one divine; those who opposed Chalcedon saw this as a concession to Nestorianism, or as a conspiracy to convert the Church to Nestorianism by stealth. As a result, over the following decades, they separated from communion with those who accepted the Council of Chalcedon, formed the body, today called Oriental Orthodoxy. At times, Chalcedonian Christians have referre
Census of Quirinius
The Census of Quirinius was a census of Judea taken by Publius Sulpicius Quirinius, Roman governor of Syria, upon the imposition of direct Roman rule in 6 CE. The Gospel of Luke uses it as the narrative means to establish the birth of Jesus, but places it within the reign of Herod the Great, who died 9 years earlier. No satisfactory explanation of the contradiction seems possible on the basis of present knowledge, most scholars think that the author of the gospel made a mistake. In 6 CE the Roman Empire deposed Herod Archelaus, who ruled the largest section of Judea as a Roman client king, converted his territory into the Roman province of Judea. Publius Sulpicius Quirinius, the newly-appointed Imperial Legate of the province of Roman Syria, was assigned to carry out a tax census of the new province. According to Josephus, a Jewish historian writing in the late first century CE, Jews reacted negatively to this census. Most were convinced to comply with it by the high priest, but some joined a rebellion led by Judas of Galilee.
The Gospel of Luke links the birth of Jesus to the census: In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Joseph went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David, he went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and, expecting a child. There are major difficulties in accepting Luke's account: the gospel links the birth of Jesus to the reign of Herod the Great, but the census took place in 6 CE, nine years after Herod's death in 4 BCE; some conservative scholars have argued that Quirinius may have had an earlier and unattested term as governor of Syria, or that he held other senior positions which may have led him to be involved in the affairs of Judea during Herod's reign, or that the passage should be interpreted in some other fashion.
Such arguments have been rejected on various grounds, including that there is no time in the known career of Quirinius when he could have served as governor of Syria before 6 CE, that the Romans did not directly tax client kingdoms, that the hostile reaction of the Jews in 6 CE suggests direct taxation by Rome was new at the time. Ralph Martin Novak says that these conservative interpretations spring from the assumption that the Bible is inerrant, Géza Vermes called such arguments "exegetical acrobatics". Most scholars have concluded. Chronology of Jesus Date of birth of Jesus Judea List of Roman governors of Syria Roman administration of Judaea Roman censor
Anglicanism is a Western Christian tradition which has developed from the practices and identity of the Church of England following the English Reformation. Adherents of Anglicanism are called "Anglicans"; the majority of Anglicans are members of national or regional ecclesiastical provinces of the international Anglican Communion, which forms the third-largest Christian communion in the world, after the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church. They are in full communion with the See of Canterbury, thus the Archbishop of Canterbury, whom the communion refers to as its primus inter pares, he calls the decennial Lambeth Conference, chairs the meeting of primates, the Anglican Consultative Council. Some churches that are not part of the Anglican Communion or recognized by the Anglican Communion call themselves Anglican, including those that are part of the Continuing Anglican movement and Anglican realignment. Anglicans base their Christian faith on the Bible, traditions of the apostolic Church, apostolic succession and the writings of the Church Fathers.
Anglicanism forms one of the branches of Western Christianity, having definitively declared its independence from the Holy See at the time of the Elizabethan Religious Settlement. Many of the new Anglican formularies of the mid-16th century corresponded to those of contemporary Protestantism; these reforms in the Church of England were understood by one of those most responsible for them, Thomas Cranmer, the Archbishop of Canterbury, others as navigating a middle way between two of the emerging Protestant traditions, namely Lutheranism and Calvinism. In the first half of the 17th century, the Church of England and its associated Church of Ireland were presented by some Anglican divines as comprising a distinct Christian tradition, with theologies and forms of worship representing a different kind of middle way, or via media, between Protestantism and Roman Catholicism – a perspective that came to be influential in theories of Anglican identity and expressed in the description of Anglicanism as "Catholic and Reformed".
The degree of distinction between Protestant and Catholic tendencies within the Anglican tradition is a matter of debate both within specific Anglican churches and throughout the Anglican Communion. Unique to Anglicanism is the Book of Common Prayer, the collection of services in one Book used for centuries; the Book is acknowledged as a principal tie that binds the Anglican Communion together as a liturgical rather than a confessional tradition or one possessing a magisterium as in the Roman Catholic Church. After the American Revolution, Anglican congregations in the United States and British North America were each reconstituted into autonomous churches with their own bishops and self-governing structures. Through the expansion of the British Empire and the activity of Christian missions, this model was adopted as the model for many newly formed churches in Africa and Asia-Pacific. In the 19th century, the term Anglicanism was coined to describe the common religious tradition of these churches.
The word Anglican originates in Anglicana ecclesia libera sit, a phrase from the Magna Carta dated 15 June 1215, meaning "the Anglican Church shall be free". Adherents of Anglicanism are called Anglicans; as an adjective, "Anglican" is used to describe the people and churches, as well as the liturgical traditions and theological concepts developed by the Church of England. As a noun, an Anglican is a member of a church in the Anglican Communion; the word is used by followers of separated groups which have left the communion or have been founded separately from it, although this is considered as a misuse by the Anglican Communion. The word Anglicanism came into being in the 19th century; the word referred only to the teachings and rites of Christians throughout the world in communion with the see of Canterbury, but has come to sometimes be extended to any church following those traditions rather than actual membership in the modern Anglican Communion. Although the term Anglican is found referring to the Church of England as far back as the 16th century, its use did not become general until the latter half of the 19th century.
In British parliamentary legislation referring to the English Established Church, there is no need for a description. When the Union with Ireland Act created the United Church of England and Ireland, it is specified that it shall be one "Protestant Episcopal Church", thereby distinguishing its form of church government from the Presbyterian polity that prevails in the Church of Scotland; the word Episcopal is preferred in the title of the Episcopal Church and the Scottish Episcopal Church, though the full name of the former is The Protestant Episcopal Church of the United States of America. Elsewhere, the term "Anglican Church" came to be preferred as it distinguished these churches from others that maintain an episcopal polity. Anglicanism, in its structures and forms of worship, is understood as a distinct Christian tradition representing a middle ground between what are perceived to be the extremes of the claims of 16th-century Roman Ca
The Gospel of John refers a number of times to a town called Cana of Galilee. The name derives from the Hebrew or Aramaic word for reeds. Among Christians and other students of the New Testament, Cana is best known as the place where, according to the Fourth Gospel, Jesus performed "the first of his signs", his first public miracle, the turning of a large quantity of water into wine at a wedding feast when the wine provided by the bridegroom had run out. Although none of the synoptic gospels record the event, mainstream Christian tradition holds that this is the first public miracle of Jesus; the other biblical references to Cana are in John: John 4:46, which mentions that Jesus is visiting Cana when he is asked to heal the son of a royal official at Capernaum. The Book of Joshua mentions one city and one brook named Cana – neither is to be the Cana of Galilee. In secular history, the annals of Assyrian king Tiglath-Pileser III, who conquered the Galilee in a 733 BC campaign, contain a badly preserved list of cities, thought to mention a certain Kana.
It relates. However, a revised transliteration revealed the one well-preserved syllable to be Ku, not Ka. Flavius Josephus mentions more than one place named Cana. There has been much speculation about. In his Gospel, the author makes no claim to have been at the wedding. Many would regard the story of the wedding at Cana as of theological rather than historical or topographical significance; the consensus of modern scholarship is that the Fourth Gospel was addressed to a group of Jewish Christians, possibly a group living in Judea province. There is a minority view that the gospel was written for a gentile audience, those who take this view assert that the description in the passage about the marriage at Cana of "six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification" is for a gentile audience, who would not know the topography of the Holy Land. On this hypothesis the name "Cana" might have some purely symbolic significance. There are at least five locations which have been under consideration as the New Testament Cana: Qana, Lebanon Kafr Kanna, Israel Khirbet Kana, Israel Karm er-Rasm, Israel Ain Quana, Israel The village of Qana, about 18 miles from Tyre, Lebanon, is traditionally held to be the correct site by many Lebanese Christians, is Eusebius's pick in his 4th century Onomasticon.
In times of peace, it is a popular tourist site commemorating the miracle. The first time this site is associated with New Testament Cana is in a mid-17th century report to the Pope by Francesco Quaresimo, the papal emissary to Palestine, where he noted there were two possible candidates: Khirbet Qana and Kafr Kanna. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, a tradition dating back to the 8th century identifies Cana with the modern Arab town of Kafr Kanna, on the feet of Nazareth range, about 7 kilometres northeast of Nazareth; some scholars believe, according to archaeological evidence, that the identification of Kafr Kanna was the result of the decline of Khirbet Qana beginning in the Mamluk period. They note that it was a common practice for new and more affluent and accessible sites to be established in place of old ones to accommodate increases in pilgrim traffic in the late Medieval and Ottoman periods; the ruined village of Khirbet Qana, meaning "the ruins of Cana", is a possible candidate.
It overlooks the Beit Netofa Valley from the north, is about 9 kilometres north of Kafr Kanna, has been noticed by pilgrims since the 12th century or earlier. Its Arabic name is Kana-el-Jalil. Although it parallels the gospel of John, it could either be an ancient retention, as Edward Robinson maintained, or it was attached to the place in conversation with querying pilgrims; this site is located on a limestone outcropping that rises 330 feet above the floor of the Bet Netofa Valley, 8 miles from Nazareth and 5 miles northeast of Sepphoris in lower Galilee. It has long been identified as the true location of New Testament Cana. Recent excavations by the late archaeologist Douglas Edwards and archaeologist Tom McCollough reveal architectural and numismatic remains that demonstrate that the site contained a modest-sized village from the Hellenistic period onward, including a structure which bears similarities to Roman-period synagogues, several Mikveh pools for Jewish ceremonial bathing. Most they uncovered a cave complex on the south slope of the site which showed indications that it had been used as a center for worship, including a sarcophagus lid/altar and a shelf which held two stone vessels in situ, space for another four vessels, suggesting that Khirbet Kana was regarded as New Testament Cana from a early time.
Remains of an Arab village and a church or monastery were uncovered south of the cave complex. Other historical evidence from the Byzantine and Medieval periods show that Khirbet Kana was regarded as the true site of New Testament Cana fro