The Church of the Redeemer is the newest church in the Old City of Jerusalem, but its site has a history going back to Charlemagne, the first Holy Roman Emperor, in the 9th century. The plain-looking neo-Romanesque building — with a tall bell tower dominating the ancient Church of the Holy Sepulchre nearby — is the headquarters of the Lutheran Church in the Holy Land. Map.
It is the home to congregations that worship in Arabic, German, Danish and English. Underneath the church, an excavated area opened in 2012 allows visitors to see ancient remains from the pre-Christian era.
The opening of the church in 1898 was a result of a 19th-century awakening of interest in the Holy Land among European Protestants. This had led Lutherans from Prussia and Anglicans from England to share a joint bishop of Jerusalem for 40 years.
The Lutheran Church of the Redeemer stands on the north-east corner of a complex of streets called the Muristan (a name derived from the Persian word for hospital). It was built on the site of the medieval church of St Mary of the Latins, which had been in ruins for centuries.