Tomb of Joseph of Arimathea
"Now there was a virtuous and righteous man named Joseph who, though he was a member of the council, had not consented to their plan of action. He came from the Jewish town of Arimathea and was awaiting the kingdom of God." (Luke 23: 50-51)
Passing between the pillars of the Rotunda and entering the room at the western extremity, one is immediately struck by the fact that it is dark and poorly maintained. Burial and Resurrection
This is the so-called chapel “of the Syrians”, a religious community that has lost various rights that it formerly enjoyed within the church. The conflict between Syrians and Armenians over the ownership of the room has led to its degradation.
A small passageway in the wall leads to the Tomb of Joseph of Arimathea: according to tradition, having offered his own tomb to Jesus and not wanting to be buried in the same tomb, the representative of the Sanhedrin had him placed in this tomb. Certainly the discovery of this tomb confirms the usage of this side of Mount Gareb as a burial area.
It is here that the Syriac Orthodox Metropolitan celebrates mass each Sunday with the adherents of this rite.
Burial and Resurrection