The Chapel of the Milk Grotto of Our Lady, in Arabic it is Called also Grotto of our Lady - Mogharat Al Sayeda or Just Milk Grotto.
The Milk Grotto, An irregular grotto hollowed out of the soft white rock stone, This grotto is transformed into a chape and lavishly decorated is an ancient Sanctuary and one very much venerated by Chrisitans and also Muslims as well.
What is the Significanse of the Milk Grotto?
According to the Christian Tradition this is the place where the family took refuge during the Massacre of the Innocents by Herod the Great before they could fee to Egypt, According to other Christian sources it is the Saint Joseph Church while going down to Beit Sahour from one of the Sub Streets, The name Milk Grotto goes back from the name Drop of Milk of the Virgin Mary Dropped on the Floor and turned the Cave into White , many couples all over the world from all Religions believe that this place is special and have healing powers of the Powder and the intercession of our Lady of the Grotto.
History of the Milk Grotto Chapel of our Lady
The Current Building we see today goes back to 1872 it was built by the Franciscans , in the Year 1935 Issa Abdulla Hazbon and his wife Helena made vow to Virgin Mary and because of that vow they decorated the Facade of the Milk Grotto Church with Arches, Stone carving including depictions of the holy family, one of them the Angel warning the Family to run away and go to Egypt before the massacre of the innocents and on your right side while entering you will see the Flight to Egypt Carved inside Stone amazing how you see the talent of the Bethlehemites in the 20th and 19th century how well they used to do the carvings, also the Stairs that go down the milk grotto inlaid with mother of pearl.
According to Tradition while the Virgin Mary was there she suckled her divine child, some drops of her milk fall which suddenly turned the Rock White, some people belive that the three Magi's (Kings, Wisemen) came together with the shepherds or right after which is not correct according to biblical references we know it lived at least year in the birth cave or somewhere near in the Birth City.
so most likely the Start point the Birth Cave in the Nativity Church then to the Milk Grotto then Bir Al Sideh in Beit sahour then to Jericho Saint Gerasmious Cave (Deir Heljah) of course this is according to Tradition.
Most likely the Holy family didn't take Patrarchs Route or Via Maris , most likely they took the King's Highway very similar to the Israelite's had to take to enter the promised land.
The Church built here at least in the 5th Century ( Roman Byzantine Era) , The church was Naturally Dedicated to the Virgin Mary but later on it was called Church of Saint Paula, could be from the Builder or by Mistake and also there is a high probability was built by Saint Paula, who lived in Bethlehem and Died there in Year 404 AD.
The Crusaders Built a Church in the Site but that church was destroyed Between 1349 and 1353 , and during that time it was known as Saint Nicholas Church and under this name it was the Papal Bull of Gregory XI in 1375 authroized the Franciscans to Rebuild it but it has not been done during the Mamluk Times.
How to use the Milk Grotto Power for fertility ?
According to Catholic Tradition both the Wife and Husband must drink a bit of the powder mixed with milk or water for nine days and perform the prayer of the third joyful mystery of the Rosary.
During Elijah Tours many of the Bethlehem Tours Visit this site for 10-15mins Please check with your Itinerary for the Tour first or contact us to make sure we will be glad to help.
The Milk Grotto also called the Chapel of the Milk Grotto or Grotto of Our Lady is a Catholic chapel that is located in the city of Bethlehem in the West Bank area of Palestine. It was erected in 1872 and since Byzantine times, this area has been a massive part of the Christian pilgrimage. It has been maintained by the Custody of the Holy Land of the Order of the Friars Minor of the Catholic Church in Palestine ever since its most recent erection with both its monastery and its Marian shrine.
The current Catholic chapel was first built in 1872 on the site of the previous Byzantine church from around the 5th century, and from that time, only part of the mosaic floors remain.
The significance of the chapel lies in the fact that Christian tradition claims it is the location where the Holy Family took refuge during the Massacre of the Innocents before they were able to flee to Egypt. The name Mild Grotto evolved from the story that a drop of milk from the Virgin Mary fell onto the floor of the cave and changed its entire color to white. The space contains three caves and is visited by some when hoping to combat infertility. It is also a place where people believe the prayers made for children are answered miraculously. Because of its significance and purported ability to answer prayers and heal, this is a popular location for Christians to visit.