Jerome Murphy-O’Connor, “The Geography of Faith,Bible Review 12:06.



The excavations of Khirbet Cana were initiated by the late Douglas Edwards (University of Puget Sound) in 1998. I joined the excavations in 2000 as field director and in 2008 became the codirector. Doug published several articles on Khirbet Cana and was working on a comprehensive report on the excavations when he died of cancer in the fall of 2008.


See James Strange, “Cana of Galilee,” in David Noel Freedman, ed., Anchor Bible Dictionary, vol. 1 (New York: Doubleday, 1992), p. 827.


Douglas Edwards, “Khirbet Qana: From Jewish Village to Christian Pilgrim Site,” in John H. Humphrey, ed., The Roman and Byzantine Near East, vol. 3., Journal of Roman Archaeology Supplementary Series 49 (Portsmouth, RI: Journal of Roman Archaeology, 2002), p. 129.


Our ceramic evidence from the foundation strata of the building date founding to the early Roman period and carbon-14 dating of the mortar from foundation stones date founding to C.E. 4–224 (95% accuracy).


We have identified the sarcophagus lid with incised crosses as “a kind of an altar,” as it appears to have been intentionally set in place to invite pilgrims to approach it and perhaps to interact in some way with the stone vessels in place behind the lid. We contend that the placement and decoration of the make-shift altar constitutes some type of liturgical action in the cave setting.


Translation of text in John Wilkinson, Jerusalem Pilgrims Before the Crusades (Warminster: Aris & Phillips, Ltd., 2002), pp. 103–116. See also Yoram Tsafrir, “The Maps Used by Theodosius: On the Pilgrim Maps of the Holy Land and Jerusalem in the Sixth Century C.E.,” Dumbarton Oaks Papers 40 (1986), pp. 129–145.


Wilkinson, Jerusalem Pilgrims, p. 105.


John Wilkinson, Jerusalem Pilgrimage: 1099–1185 (London: the Hakluyt Society, 1988), p. 111.


See the discussion of Crusader-era pilgrimage and texts in Wilkinson, Jerusalem Pilgrimage.


Wilkinson, Jerusalem Pilgrimage, p. 231.


Text cited in Peter Richardson, “What Has Cana to Do with Capernaum?” New Testament Studies 48 (2002), pp. 314–331.


Milka Levy-Rubin, “Marino Sanuto and Petrus Vesconte,” in Ariel Tishby, ed., The Holy Land in Maps (Jerusalem: The Israel Museum and Rizzioli International Publications, 2001), p. 74.


Perhaps the most famous cartographer of the 16th century, Gerardus Mercator published a map of the Holy Land in 1585 and located Cana of Galilee northwest of Sepphoris with Nazareth to the southeast, as one would find it today. A richly illustrated early 17th-century map produced by the Englishman Thomas Fuller follows this pattern and illumines Cana of Galilee with a church or monastery enclosed by a wall.


Eugenio Alliata, “I recenti scavi a Kefer Kenna,” La Terra Sancta 1 (1999), pp. 16–17.


Yardenna Alexandre, “The Archaeological Evidence of the Great Revolt at Karm er-Ras (Kafr Kanna) in the Lower Galilee,” in Ofra Guri-Rimon, ed., The Great Revolt in the Galilee (Haifa: Hecht Museum, University of Haifa, 2008), pp. 73–80.


Steve Mason, Flavius Josephus: Translation and Commentary, vol. 9, Life of Josephus (Leiden: Brill, 2001), p. 69.


Onomasticon 116, in Joan Taylor, ed., The Onomasticon of Eusebius of Caesarea, trans. by Greville Stewart Parker Freeman-Grenville (Jerusalem: Carta, 2003).