Church and crypt

Erected on the foundations of old Byzantine and Crusader churches, the current church was made in the 1930s.

The upper church

The current church was built in the neo-Byzantine style by the Assumptionist Father Etienne Boubet, architect and self-taught artist.

The sculpted bronze doors connect the scene at the Cenacle when Jesus,
after the Last Supper, predicted to Peter his triple denial with the place it occurred.
The interior of the church, decorated with mosaics
The mosaic in the choir of the church: The Sanhedrin sentences Jesus to death for proclaiming that
He is the Son of God. Caiaphas (on the right) tears up his clothes while saying: “He blasphemed
(Matthew 26, 65-66). In the sky, God hides his face to no longer face those who are condemning his Son.
Four angels present to Jesus the cross he just accepted as a sign of loyalty for his Father:
God had such love for the world that he gave his only Son” (John 3, 16).
The big stained-glass window under the dome: “From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting
at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.
” (Matthew, 26:64)
The mosaic at the back of the church: Mary and John standing at the foot of the Cross

The crypt

Built over the deep pit, the crypt occupies a large space cut out of the rock. The area extends outside, up to the step street. This place may be the courtyard where Peter was when he denied Jesus, sitting around a campfire with the guards.

While Peter was below in the courtyard” (Mark 14:66)

Three icons, made in 1995 by a the Russian iconographer Evgeni Kisets, show:

  • Jesus looking upon Peter after his third denial
  • Peter crying over his sin
  • The Risen Christ confirming Peter’s mission and Peter affirming his love for Jesus three times

The deep pit is visible from the crypt, through a hole in the rock.

A cross dating from the first pilgrimages organized by the Assumptionists to the Holy Land,
starting from 1882, is exposed at the back of the crypt. These crosses were attached to the masts of
the boats that carried all the pilgrims and borne during the Via Crucis procession.