Saint Catherines Church
Saint Catherines Church is a Franciscan Catholic church just north of the Church of the Nativity on Manger Square in Bethlehem. Outside the west door of the church is a pleasant cloister, restored in 1948 by A. Barluzzi. The church marks the spot where St. Catherine of Alexandria was visited by Christ who told her of her future martyrdom.
St. Catherine of Alexandria is known as the Great Martyr and also as Saint Catherine of the Wheel after the method of her torture. Tradition states that the wheel broke down and she was then beheaded. She is believed to have lived in the IV Century. Catholics hold her as one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers. She is buried on Mt. Sinai.
Midnight Mass Celebrated in Bethlehem
The Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem celebrates Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve at the Church of St. Catherine, in Bethlehem next to the Church of the Nativity. The Church of the Nativity was built above the grotto where tradition says Jesus was born.