Mensa Christi Church in Latin Mensa Christi means “Table of the Messiah” is an inactive Catholic-Franciscan church in Nazareth. The place was a site of pilgrimage beginning in the 17th century; due to a rock that was identified as a table on which Jesus and the apostles dined when he was revealed to them after his resurrection from the dead.
The rock which is inside Mensa Christi Church is made of limestone and has been renovated many times due to the custom of pilgrims to break pieces of it and take them as a souvenir. At the end of the 18th century, a chapel was erected on the site. But it was demolished over the years, and in 1861 the present church building was constructed, and masses began to be held there regularly. Towards the year 2000, the frescoes and the dome of the building were renovated.
A Short Description of Mensa Christi Church
So the Mensa Christi Church is quite small and is built of a single square-shaped space; on one side of which expands an apse and above it a half-dome. The dome of the church is painted on the outside in red and above there is a cross. It rests on an octagonal drum which is in turn carried by four arches. In the octagon are four windows, through which most of the light penetrates into the space of the building.
In front of the Mensa Christi Church is a brown wooden door, and above it are engraved in stone the symbols of the Franciscan Order and the Custody of the Holy Land. Also above these symbols is a window in the shape of a quadrupole and above it is a cornice and a simple stone gable. Moreover, inside the church, there is almost no furniture, and on its far side from the entrance is a large; unsharpened limestone rock; which is considered the dining table. Lastly, behind it is a small altar of colored marble, adjacent to the wall behind it, and above it a painting of the Feast of Jesus and the Apostles.