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Храм святого Георгия в Лидде: тлен и святостьon November 16, the Orthodox Church celebrates the update (sanctification of the temple of the Holy great-Martyr George in Lydda. The Church, built in the fourth century and re-consecrated in the end of XIX-th (in 1872), a truly amazing story. The Church, which is located on the historical territory of ancient Israel, was built by Russian philanthropists.

St. George is one of the most beloved and venerated saints in Russia. Strong body and spirit warrior, an aristocrat by birth, he hath despised the earth's riches and glory in order to serve Christ. For his faith George was subjected to cruel torture and executions under the rule of an ardent zealot paganism - Emperor Doctrine. Already knowing about their fate, George asked his servant after death to move his body in Palestine (apparently, the ascetic did not want over the relics outraged Gentiles). Faithful Minister has fulfilled the request of Mr. and they buried him in Ramle (the ancient name - Arimathea; here was born Joseph of Arimathea, a famous disciple of Christ). Even then, even when Diocletian, a burial place of St. George became a Shrine, which was secretly visited by Christian pilgrims. There, on his Holy relics, the elders did liturgical services.

But times have changed, and the Roman Empire through the Providence of God was ruled by the Christian emperors. When on the throne of the Holy equal to the apostles Constantine, he first made sure that the faith of Christ was worshipped in the Empire at the state level. Then began the construction of a temple in honour of the Holy GreatMartyr George in the Palestinian city of Lydda (or Lod).

Lydda was repeatedly mentioned in the Book of Acts. He was on the South-East Joppa in the Sharon valley and belonged to the tribe of Benjamin. Here occurred the miraculous healing of the Holy Apostle Peter paralytic Aeneas (acts. 9:32-35). The Christian community of the city was famous not only because it was founded one of the first, but diligence in service. The Scripture said, "Peter said to him, Aeneas! heals you Jesus Christ; arise, and make thy bed. And he arose immediately. And seen him all that dwelt at Lydda and Saron, and turned to the Lord" (acts. 9:34-35). Many residents of Liddy had a living, active faith and firmly walked through the gospel path. Perhaps that is why the town was given the honor to keep the relics of one of the strongest soldiers of Christ that ever lived on Earth. They were transferred from Rally when the stunning beauty of Lydian the Church has already been completed.

Historical Chronicles report that this event occurred on November 16, according to the new style (3 November - old). Already in the calendar of the Syrian Church 1030 contains information about this holiday. There are also more ancient documents containing information about the Church itself. This is, first of all, itinerary deacon Theodosius "About the location of the Holy land" (written about 530 years), then the certificate PATENTSCOPE pilgrim and Theodosius, dated 570 year. For several centuries the Church was one of the most respected in the Christian East.

But it so happened that once revered temple of the GreatMartyr George came in a fair desolation. There were times when the whole, only the grave of the Saint and the altar.

Pilgrims IX century, Bernard Monk and Monk Epiphanius, in his memoirs wrote about the monastery, existed at the Church of the GreatMartyr George in Lydda and about Orthodox relics found there: the wheel, which was tortured Saint patron of this Church, and a marble column, at which the number of miraculous phenomena. But in the later period of the history of Palestine was conquered by the Arabs, although ordinary Muslims loyal and even respectful attitude to the personality of the Christian Saint, Caliph al-Hakim gave the order to destroy the Church. Fortunately, in 1010 Church in honor of the heavenly intercessor of all the soldiers was rebuilt by the pious Emperor Constantine IX Monomakh. An interesting historical fact is that in the restoration took an active part king-consolidator Hungary, subsequently glorified among the saints, - Stephen (Stefan) I.

Challenging for the temple were numerous earthquakes, which were in the land in 1033-m, 1067-m and 1068 years, and in 1071) Lydda was occupied by the Seljuk Turks. But "history of the patriarchs of Alexandria", compiled by Sevirem Ibn al-Mukaffa, reports that the relics of the GreatMartyr George, despite all the changes, always rested in the same place - under the main altar of the Cathedral Church of Liddy.

Just before the biblical city of Aeneas attacked the crusaders, the temple was destroyed by the Muslims again - by the way, not for religious reasons, and because of fears that his huge beams will be used for the construction catapults that will storm Jerusalem. During the stay of the papal knights in Lydda Catholic Bishop Lidskii and Ralskem was appointed Robert Rouen, but in George's Church continued to commit Orthodox Liturgy of the Greek clergy. Finally, in the XII century, presumably, previously 1177 (probably between 1150 and 1170 years), the restoration of shrines were themselves the knights-crusaders. Instead of the former Byzantine Basilica was rebuilt in Gothic pre 1187 year.

Then the Church was many times destroyed and restored (the big merit in the latter belongs to the legendary English king Richard the Lionheart).

The last and the biggest, from our point of view, the contribution to the salvation of the Church is the tomb of St. George was done by the government of the Russian Empire and in all Orthodox people of Russia. The highest decree of Emperor Alexander II for a good cause the rebuilding of the temple were donated 3 thousand rubles, huge for its time. The restored Church was consecrated on November 16, 1872, by the Providence of God, this date coincided with that number, when within its walls was finished the first rite of consecration of the Holy equal-to-apostles Tsar Constantine.

God works in mysterious ways. But God sends and signs, in which the believing heart easily learns His Grace...
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