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Ephesus (Kusadasi) Turkey: House of the Virgin Mary


About Ephesus & the Holy House:

Here on the West Coast of Turkey lies one of the most important sites to both Christians and Muslims. This is believed to be the home of the Blessed Virgin Mary during her last few years on earth. According to Church tradition, the Disciple John (John the Evangelist) took Mary in to his care as directed by Jesus from the cross, and brought her to Ephesus to avoid the persecutions of Christians in Jerusalem.

The Catholic Church has never pronounced on the authenticity of the house; however, it received the blessing of the first pilgrimage by Pope Leo XIII in 1896, who had a positive attitude towards the site. Pope Pius XII, in 1951, following the definition of the dogma of the Assumption in 1950, elevated the house to the status of a Holy Place, a privilege later made permanent by Pope John XXIII. Pope Paul VI visited the shrine on July 26, 1967, and Pope John Paul II on November 30, 1979. Pope Benedict XVI visited the shrine on November 29, 2006, during his four-day pastoral trip to Turkey.

About the Holy House in Ephesus:

Exterior of the Holy House at EphesusIt was thought by some that the Blessed Mother resided in Ephesus but there was little evidence to support that belief.  The house had fallen into disrepair until only the foundation remained.   The famous mystic Anne Catherine Emmerich (1774-1824) was given many visions of the life of Our Lady. Due to the descriptions in these revelations, a French priest explored and discovered the remains of the house in 1881; however, his findings went un-noticed and mostly ignored.

Ten years later a group of archaeologists led by Fr. Jung of the Order of Lazarists re-discovered the house…….following the directions of Anne Catherine Emmerich. They were amazed to find that the descriptions provided by the mystic so closely matched the house as they found it.

The site is visited and venerated by Muslims as well as Christians.  Pilgrims drink from a spring under the house which is believed to have healing properties. A liturgical ceremony is held here every year on August 15 to commemorate the Assumption of Mary.


Traveling to Ephesus & the Holy House:

A sign here in Ephesus tells of the Holy HouseMany Catholic tours of Turkey will include Ephesus. It is also a popular stop on many Mediterranean cruises, perhaps more for the Roman ruins than the Holy House, so be sure that you include that if you plan to visit. There are usually a few hours allotted to touring Ephesus.

Pope Saint Pius X granted plenary indulgences for those visiting the shrine and in 1951, Pope Pius XII declared it as an official sanctuary. Since then it has many famous visitors including Pope John Paul II.

It draws an estimated 10,000 people per week.

Address: 35920 Selçuk/İzmir, Turkey

GPS coordinates: 37° 54′ 44.6652” N, 27° 20′ 1.8096” E (Approx.)

email:  contact@meryemana.info

Click here for the official website for the Holy House Shrine in Ephesus.

If you need taxi service, check with Ephesus Taxi Service, they get good reviews. Here is a short video that they have put together.


The nearest town is Selcuk, about 5 miles away: Find hotels and restaurants, compare prices, and read what other travelers have to say at TripAdvisor

In the U.S. there is also Our Lady of Ephesus House of Prayer in Vermont.


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