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History of Christianity in Turkey

History of Christianity in Turkey

Christianity has a long history in Turkey, which is the birthplace of numerous Christian Apostles and Saints, such as Paul of Tarsus, Timothy, Nicholas of Myra, Polycarp of Smyrna and many others.

What is the population of Christians in Turkey?

Turkey was once home to many Christians. The population of Christians in Turkey fell from 20 percent in 1914 to 5.5 percent in 1927, to 0.2% today.

Although only a small number of Christians live in Turkey today, Istanbul is the seat of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, one of the oldest of the Eastern Orthodox Churches. Antakya (Antioch) is the official seat of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and all of the East.

List of sacred Christian sites in Turkey

Here is a list of sacred places in Turkey, which has been designated pilgrimage sites for Christian visitors today:

EPHESUS (EFES)

Epheshus is the second place of pilgrimage of Christians which is the home of the Virgin Mary and St. John. In 431 AD The Second Ecumenical Council took place here in the Church of the Virgin Mary. This church is one of the seven churches of the Apocalypse. Here is also a basilica, in which the hl. John was buried. Nearby is the mountain Bülbül, where the house of the Virgin Mary is located.

CAPPADOCIA  (KAPADOKYA)

Here the first Christians found refuge from Romans. Cave churches and their paintings with religious motifs, and a 8-story subterranean refuge city are worth seeing.

Myra (DEMRE)

Museum of St. Nicolaus: The hl. Nicolaus was bored in Patara. In the 4th year he served as archbishop in this church He died in the ancient city of Myra.

HIERAPOLIS (PAMUKKALE)

The martyrdom of St. Phillippus: Pamukkale is a white wonderland created by nature. It is also the place where St. Phillippus suffered his martyrdom. Here you can find the remains of an octagonal basilica from the 5th century.

Nicaea (IZNIK)

The Cathedral of Sts. Sophie was the seat of the First Ecumenical Council in 325. AD.

ANTIOCHIA (ANTAKYA)

The Grotto of St. Peter: This grotto is the place where the followers of Christ first took the name “Christians” (Acts 11/26). The hl. Paul left here for his first missionary journey.

PSIDIC ANTIOCHIA (YALVAC)

Basilica of Sts. Paul: hl. Paul gave his first sermons in a synagogue (Acts 13: 13-16), the remains of which are now the basilica.

SARDIS (SART)

The old synagogue from the 3rd century. v. Chr. Is the most important find in the excavations in Sardis. It is one of the oldest synagogues in Anatolia.

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