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In the heart of the place where Jesus taught the "Our Father" to his disciples

From the first centuries the Christians of Jerusalem honoured the memory of the Ascension and of the grotto where Jesus often stayed and taught his disciples.

The Empress Helena commissioned a building (Cf. Life of Constantin). At the end of the IVth century, the faithful of Jerusalem gathered in Eleona (from the Greek elaiōn "olive grove") for many celebrations, especially on Palm Sunday.

Later, the faithful focused on the teaching of the Our Father by Jesus, which can be localised in Eleona according to Lk 11,1-4. The teaching of the Lord’s prayer immediately follows Jesus’s visit t Martha and Mary of Bethany, just a few hundred meters from there.


In 614, the Persians destroyed the basilica and the surrounding monasteries. A new building was erected by the Crusaders. It later got destroyed by Saladin’s troops. End of 19th century, the Princess of the Tour d’Auvergne undertook to rebuild a sanctuary. She gave it to France, and helped Carmelites come too.

Today, the Our Father prayer is inscribed on ceramic panels in nearly 190 languages. The Carmelite nuns, originating from France at the time of foundation, but nowadays from several nationalities, provide a spiritual presence on this holy place. By their fraternal prayer life, they want to continue the mystery of the Lord’s prayer.



may your name be held holy,

your kingdom come;

give us each day our daily bread,

and forgive us our sins,

for we ourselves forgive each one who is in debt to us.

And do not put us to the test.”

The Our Father in St Luke:

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