Most Beautiful Churches: Where is Christianity Practiced in the Middle East?

Published May 30th, 2018 - 09:09 GMT

Christianity began in the Middle East and has existed here continuously since the first century. With the rise and rapid spread of Islam from the seventh century, Christianity has come under persecution. The decline in numbers is great compared to what they once were, but Christians still practice their faith in the region.

The Christian churches of the Middle East are instrumental to the survival of the faith, but remain a tiny minority of the overall population. All denominations of Christian belief are active in the Middle East.

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Van Church in Isfahan, Iran
The Holy Savior Cathedral, also known the Church of the Saintly Sisters, is a cathedral located in the New Julfa district of Isfahan, Iran. It is commonly referred to as the Vank, which means "monastery" or "convent" in the Armenian language (Twitter)

Van Church in Isfahan, Iran The Holy Savior Cathedral, also known the Church of the Saintly Sisters, is a cathedral located in the New Julfa district of Isfahan, Iran. It is commonly referred to as the Vank, which means "monastery" or "convent" in the Armenian language (Twitter)

Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem 
According to traditions dating back to the fourth century, the church is home to two of the holiest sites in Christendom, the site where Jesus of Nazareth was crucified and Jesus's empty tomb. The construction of the church began in 325/326 (Twitter)

Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem According to traditions dating back to the fourth century, the church is home to two of the holiest sites in Christendom, the site where Jesus of Nazareth was crucified and Jesus's empty tomb. The construction of the church began in 325/326 (Twitter)

The Stone Chapel is a reconstruction of a 500 A. church in Tomarza, Cappadocia (Turkey). Located at Lanier Theological Library in Houston (Twitter)

The Stone Chapel is a reconstruction of a 500 A. church in Tomarza, Cappadocia (Turkey). Located at Lanier Theological Library in Houston (Twitter)

Cathedral of Saint Elias and Saint Gregory the Illuminator, Beirut
A cathedral of the Armenian Catholic Church located in the downtown Beirut area. The church was funded in 1928 by Pope Pius XI. The architecture of the cathedral differs slight from traditional Armenian architecture, drawing some inspiration from Rome (Twitter)

Cathedral of Saint Elias and Saint Gregory the Illuminator, Beirut A cathedral of the Armenian Catholic Church located in the downtown Beirut area. The church was funded in 1928 by Pope Pius XI. The architecture of the cathedral differs slight from traditional Armenian architecture, drawing some inspiration from Rome (Twitter)

Church of St. George, Istanbul
The church is known to be the principal Greek Orthodox cathedral still in use in Istanbul (Twitter)

Church of St. George, Istanbul The church is known to be the principal Greek Orthodox cathedral still in use in Istanbul (Twitter)

Byzantine Church of Saint George at Madaba, Jordan
This rather modest 19th-century Greek Orthodox church houses a treasure of early Christianity. In 1884 Christian builders came across the remnants of a Byzantine church on their construction site (Screenshot)

Byzantine Church of Saint George at Madaba, Jordan This rather modest 19th-century Greek Orthodox church houses a treasure of early Christianity. In 1884 Christian builders came across the remnants of a Byzantine church on their construction site (Screenshot)

Church of St. Anthony of Padua, Istanbul
The largest church of the Roman Catholic Church in Istanbul is at İstiklal Avenue No. 171 in the Beyoğlu district. Originally built in 1725 by the local Italian community of Istanbul, the church was later demolished and replaced with the current building (Shutterstock)

Church of St. Anthony of Padua, Istanbul The largest church of the Roman Catholic Church in Istanbul is at İstiklal Avenue No. 171 in the Beyoğlu district. Originally built in 1725 by the local Italian community of Istanbul, the church was later demolished and replaced with the current building (Shutterstock)

Van Church in Isfahan, Iran
The Holy Savior Cathedral, also known the Church of the Saintly Sisters, is a cathedral located in the New Julfa district of Isfahan, Iran. It is commonly referred to as the Vank, which means "monastery" or "convent" in the Armenian language (Twitter)
Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem 
According to traditions dating back to the fourth century, the church is home to two of the holiest sites in Christendom, the site where Jesus of Nazareth was crucified and Jesus's empty tomb. The construction of the church began in 325/326 (Twitter)
The Stone Chapel is a reconstruction of a 500 A. church in Tomarza, Cappadocia (Turkey). Located at Lanier Theological Library in Houston (Twitter)
Cathedral of Saint Elias and Saint Gregory the Illuminator, Beirut
A cathedral of the Armenian Catholic Church located in the downtown Beirut area. The church was funded in 1928 by Pope Pius XI. The architecture of the cathedral differs slight from traditional Armenian architecture, drawing some inspiration from Rome (Twitter)
Church of St. George, Istanbul
The church is known to be the principal Greek Orthodox cathedral still in use in Istanbul (Twitter)
Byzantine Church of Saint George at Madaba, Jordan
This rather modest 19th-century Greek Orthodox church houses a treasure of early Christianity. In 1884 Christian builders came across the remnants of a Byzantine church on their construction site (Screenshot)
Church of St. Anthony of Padua, Istanbul
The largest church of the Roman Catholic Church in Istanbul is at İstiklal Avenue No. 171 in the Beyoğlu district. Originally built in 1725 by the local Italian community of Istanbul, the church was later demolished and replaced with the current building (Shutterstock)
Van Church in Isfahan, Iran
The Holy Savior Cathedral, also known the Church of the Saintly Sisters, is a cathedral located in the New Julfa district of Isfahan, Iran. It is commonly referred to as the Vank, which means "monastery" or "convent" in the Armenian language (Twitter)
Van Church in Isfahan, Iran The Holy Savior Cathedral, also known the Church of the Saintly Sisters, is a cathedral located in the New Julfa district of Isfahan, Iran. It is commonly referred to as the Vank, which means "monastery" or "convent" in the Armenian language (Twitter)
Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem 
According to traditions dating back to the fourth century, the church is home to two of the holiest sites in Christendom, the site where Jesus of Nazareth was crucified and Jesus's empty tomb. The construction of the church began in 325/326 (Twitter)
Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem According to traditions dating back to the fourth century, the church is home to two of the holiest sites in Christendom, the site where Jesus of Nazareth was crucified and Jesus's empty tomb. The construction of the church began in 325/326 (Twitter)
The Stone Chapel is a reconstruction of a 500 A. church in Tomarza, Cappadocia (Turkey). Located at Lanier Theological Library in Houston (Twitter)
The Stone Chapel is a reconstruction of a 500 A. church in Tomarza, Cappadocia (Turkey). Located at Lanier Theological Library in Houston (Twitter)
Cathedral of Saint Elias and Saint Gregory the Illuminator, Beirut
A cathedral of the Armenian Catholic Church located in the downtown Beirut area. The church was funded in 1928 by Pope Pius XI. The architecture of the cathedral differs slight from traditional Armenian architecture, drawing some inspiration from Rome (Twitter)
Cathedral of Saint Elias and Saint Gregory the Illuminator, Beirut A cathedral of the Armenian Catholic Church located in the downtown Beirut area. The church was funded in 1928 by Pope Pius XI. The architecture of the cathedral differs slight from traditional Armenian architecture, drawing some inspiration from Rome (Twitter)
Church of St. George, Istanbul
The church is known to be the principal Greek Orthodox cathedral still in use in Istanbul (Twitter)
Church of St. George, Istanbul The church is known to be the principal Greek Orthodox cathedral still in use in Istanbul (Twitter)
Byzantine Church of Saint George at Madaba, Jordan
This rather modest 19th-century Greek Orthodox church houses a treasure of early Christianity. In 1884 Christian builders came across the remnants of a Byzantine church on their construction site (Screenshot)
Byzantine Church of Saint George at Madaba, Jordan This rather modest 19th-century Greek Orthodox church houses a treasure of early Christianity. In 1884 Christian builders came across the remnants of a Byzantine church on their construction site (Screenshot)
Church of St. Anthony of Padua, Istanbul
The largest church of the Roman Catholic Church in Istanbul is at İstiklal Avenue No. 171 in the Beyoğlu district. Originally built in 1725 by the local Italian community of Istanbul, the church was later demolished and replaced with the current building (Shutterstock)
Church of St. Anthony of Padua, Istanbul The largest church of the Roman Catholic Church in Istanbul is at İstiklal Avenue No. 171 in the Beyoğlu district. Originally built in 1725 by the local Italian community of Istanbul, the church was later demolished and replaced with the current building (Shutterstock)