EPHESUS – THE HOUSE OF VIRGIN MARY
74 km away from Teos Marina, Ephesus, one of the most famous cities in antiquity, was founded on the harbor where the Küçük Menderes (Kaistros) River flows into the sea. One of the biggest open-air museums of ancient World, Ephesus is the melting point of religions and civilizations.
The House of Virgin Mary is situated at the Peak of Bülbül Mountain, 9 kilometers from Selçuk. According to the legend, St. John came to Ephesus with Virgin Mary four or six years after the crucifixion of Jesus. Following the visions of a German nun. Catherina Emmerich, a group of Lazarist priests discovered a house, which is believed to be the palace where Virgin Mary spent her last days, in 1891. This discovery attracted the attention of the entire Christian world. The cruciform building topped with a dome was restored in modern times. The house received visits from Pope Paul VI in 1967 and Pope John Paul II in 1979, which strengthened the belief that Virgin Mary lived and died in Ephesus. This site has become a frequent destination for pilgrims, since the image of Virgin Mary is venerated not only by Christians but also by Muslims. A special mass is held on every 15 August, which attracts numerous visitors.