Home of the Virgin Mary in Ephesus
In the Solmissos Mountains located on the top of the “Bulbul” mountain 9 km from Ephesus, is a shrine to the Virgin Mary. It is a place where Mary sought solitude in her later years. St. John the apostle cared for Mary after the crucifixion of Jesus and spent time writing the Gospel of John while he stayed in Ephesus.
Pope Paul VI is recorded as the first pope to visit this place in the 1960’s. In the 1980’s, Pope John-Paul II declared the Shrine of Virgin Mary has a pilgrimage place for Christians. The third Pope to visit the house of the Virgin Mary is Pope Benedict XVI. He celebrated Mass here on Nov. 29, 2006.
Mary’s modest home is still here and it is recognized by Muslims and Christians. One part has been configured as a Christian worship space and another as a Muslim chapel.
The home is small and only a kitchen, a sleeping space and the two worship spaces are open for public tours.
No pictures are allowed inside but a framed picture is posted on a stand outside the exit where like all the other tourists I captured an image of the alter worship space inside.
Surrounded by lush greenery, birds and a fresh stream, it is a very tranquil calming place.
Every year, on August 15th a ceremony is organized to commemorate Mary’s Assumption.