The Greek Orthodox monastery of the God-trodden Mount Sinai is located at the very place where God appeared to Moses in the Burning Bush, beneath the Mount of the Decalogue. In the providence of God, it is at this site also that the holy relics of Saint Catherine are enshrined. This is the oldest continuously inhabited Christian monastery, with a history that can be traced back over seventeen centuries. The monastery predates the divisions of the Christian world, its origins extending to late antiquity.
The Greek Orthodox Church of Jerusalem is considered the “Mother Church” of the Holy Land. The biggest single group of Holy Land Christians belongs to this Church and many Christians who belong today to other Churches have their origins in the Greek Orthodox Church. The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem sees itself as a direct descendant of the chair of St James the Apostle, venerated as first bishop of Jerusalem. The Church celebrates its liturgy in the Byzantine rite, whose original language is Greek, and follows its own calendar of feasts, preserving the Julian calendar (that is thirteen days behind the Western (Gregorian) calendar.