They climb to 3100 meters to reach the monastery
Ethiopian Orthodox Christians make their way to Asheton Maryam Monastery at Mount Abuna Yosef in Lalibela, Ethiopia. Asheton Maryam Monastery, currently a church, is located approximately at 3100 meters altitude which can’t be reached with land transport. Lalibela is a high place of Ethiopian Christianity, still today a place of pilmigrage and devotion.
In order to reach the monastery where it is impossible to go by road, it is necessary to travel 400 meters on a thin road to the edge of the cliff.
The monastery built by Na’akueto La’ab, who reigned after King Gebre Meskel Lalibela in the 13th century, is the only place where people can participate in the service.
A large number of priests who continue the centuries-old tradition are being trained in this monastery.
The priests claim that they are closer to God on this mountain.
The monastery gives the opportunity to view the town of Lalibela hundreds of meters above and also attracts many foreign and local tourists.
Saliye Samhain, a priest who lives here, said, “We are talking only to God in this place. We beg him for his mercy. We feel that we are closer to God.”
The Ashetan Maryam Monastery, where even the elders climb with a lot of patience, is hosting rituals on Sundays. The church community which gathers before dawn, attends the rituals which are held all the day.