For other uses, see Church of the Transfiguration (disambiguation).
Church of the Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration Mount Tabor200704.JPG

Exterior View

Basic information
Location Israel Mount Tabor, Israel
Affiliation Roman Catholic
Leadership Franciscan Order
Architectural description
Year completed 1924

The Church of the Transfiguration is a Franciscan church located on Mount Tabor in Israel. It is traditionally believed to be the site where the Transfiguration of Christ took place, an event in the Gospels in which Jesus is transfigured upon an unnamed mountain and speaks with Moses and Elijah.[1]


The current church, part of a Franciscan monastery complex, was completed in 1924. It was built on the ruins of an ancient (4th–6th century) Byzantine church and a 12th century church of the Crusader Kingdom period.[2] There is a Greek Orthodox church located on Mount Tabor as well, dedicated to the same purpose.


The church contains three grottoes belonging to the Crusader church. They were described by Jonas Korte, a publisher from Eldena, as "three chapels, with a small altar. They are called tabernacles, and they are said to represent the three huts which Peter desired to build, one for his Master (Jesus) the other two for Moses and Elias (Elijah)".

The Grotto of Christ is in the eastern part of the church. Steps lead down to a lower level containing a sanctuary roofed with a modern vault.

There is a chapel in each of the two towers at the western end of the church. The Chapel of Elijah is located in the south tower; the north tower holds the Chapel of Moses.

In the upper part of the church there is a mosaic on a gold ground representing the Transfiguration.[2] On Aug 6th, which is the "day of the Transfiguration" in some church calendar, the sun strikes a glass plate set into the floor so that the golden mosaic is briefly illuminated.

The Transfiguraton

The Transfiguration of Jesus is an event reported by the Synoptic Gospels in which Jesus is transfigured upon a mountain (Matthew 17:1–9, Mark 9:2–8, Luke 9:28–36). Jesus becomes radiant, speaks with Moses and Elijah, and is called "Son" by God. The transfiguration put Jesus above Moses and Elijah, the two preeminent figures of Judaism.

Several mountains have been identified as the site of the Transfiguration, for example the tallest mountain in Israel, Mount Hermon. Mount Tabor is closer to the center of Jesus's activities and therefore the Bishop Cyril of Jerusalem wrote in the year 348 that he preferred Mount Tabor to Mount Hermon. Thus Mount Tabor was accepted as the site of the transfiguration of Christ.[1]



External Links

Coordinates: 32°41′10″N 35°23′34″E / 32.686243°N 35.392853°E / 32.686243; 35.392853ru:Базилика Преображения Господня (Фавор)

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