The Franciscan Order established the “Custodia di Terra Santa” – the “Guardianship of the Holy Land” and built this hospice as hostel for Catholic pilgrims from Europe. It was named after Joseph of Arimathea (Yosef Haramati) due to the similarity between “Arimathea” and “Haramati”, even though Yosef-Joseph came from a different area near Jerusalem. Even so, the site was pronounced sacred to Catholics and a monastery was built adjacent to the hospice. Joseph of Arimathea, together with Nicodemus (Nakdimon), took Jesus off the cross. The Hospice of St. Nicodemus and St. Joseph of Arimathea has a clock-faced, square tower. In 1799, Napoleon used the hospice as his headquarters during his Palestine campaign. Tour guides tell us that Napoleon shot the muezzin of the nearby mosque who disturbed his sleep. The room he stayed in is closed to visitors, but you can see it from the outside below.
The present Franciscan Catholic church was built at the end of the 19th century. An “original” painting of The Descent from the Cross” by the Italian renaissance painter Titian, was donated by the city of Madrid in the year 1846. Art experts now claim that this painting was done by a student of Titian and not by Titian himself. On the second floor of the church one can see the room of Napoleon Bonaparte, emperor of France.
Address: Bialik St. corner of Hamisdar Hafranciskani St.
Visit only by reservations against a symbolic fee
Tel: 08-9127200, City service center – 08-9771780/79
Emblems of the Franciscan order in the Holy Land
- Two pairs of hands; one pair is covered by the sleeves of a robe (St. Francis), and the second pair is bare (Jesus).
- A cross surrounded by four smaller crosses, called the Jerusalem Cross, a symbol of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem in the 12th century.
The Monastery of St. Nicodemus and St. Joseph of Arimathea
A peek into the monastery through a door left open by mistake.
Terra Sancta School
In the “Terra Santa” school Muslim and Christian children study together. The school was built in the 19th Century.
Ramla Guided Tour GPS Application and Voice Guide
Download this free audio guide. The tour begins at the bazaar ‘s parking lot (King Solomon Boulevard).The tour is a circular. Please make sure that your batteries are full, activate the GPS in your device. Currently, the tour is available ONLY in Hebrew.