The Chapel of Saint Helena is located at the lower level of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and right next to the cistern where the True Cross was found by Saint Helena the mother of the Roman Emperor,  Constantine the great. Every year the is a feast of the Invantion of the True Cross in the cistern and through the Chapel of Saint Helena.

The Chapel is managed by the Armenian Orthodox and it has been recently (2019) restored.

The Chapel is named after Saint Helena but was renamed in honour of St Gregory the Illuminator – the patron saint and first official head of the Armenian Apostolic Church. St. Gregory was a religious leader who is credited with converting Armenia from paganism to Christianity in 301. Armenia thus became the first nation to adopt Christianity as its official religion.

When we visit the Chapel we can see several very interesting wall pictures which depicte several important events in the history of the Armenian nation.

On the Northen wall, there are 2 pictures. One depictes Gregory being taken out of the pit after 11 years and the second one depictes Gregory bapitzing Tiridates III along with members of the royal court and upper class as Christians.

On the southern wall there is a picture depicting the return of the holy cross to Jerusalem as it pass through Armenia.

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  • I was in Jerusalem with a group. we pass through this chapel on our why the cistern where Helena found the true cross and had not stopped for a minute here. Thank you for this inspiring video.

    Now I want to visit Jerusalem again.

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