In my Father’s house are many mansions

In my Fathers house are many mansions

In my Father’s house are many mansions

               Genre: Documentary
               Religion, jealousy, Jerusalem, Holy Sepulcher

… and yet it is there quite tight

  It is the most unusual Urbanization of the World: In the Holy Sepulcher argue Christians of different denominations for centuries for prayer times, inputs and access to the grave of Jesus.

In the middle of Jerusalem is the largest sanctuary of the Christian world, the Holy Sepulcher. In it are monks of six different religions at home: Greek Orthodox Christians, Roman Catholic Franciscans, Syrian Christians, Armenian Christians, Ethiopian Abyssinian and Egyptian Copts. What at first sounds like a practically lived ecumenism, is the exact opposite of peaceful coexistence. Director and cameraman Hajo Schomerus portrayed the six men who are fighting bitterly for supremacy of their own community.

Schomerus’ fascination with this particular location is transferred quickly to the audience. When the camera captures the church in the morning from the outside, it looks like an incredibly peaceful place. Perhaps one of the communities can be heard in prayer, otherwise it works here quietly and reverently. But once the workday begins, there will be waiting lines outside the door. A group of young soldiers visited the Holy Sepulcher as part of their training. “Let the weapons for those who are waiting outside,” and “No smoking inside!”, Sharpen their head they book. In the church she has first to “this thing” out in the corner, the Catholics do with the music – an organ. “And who is buried here?” Asks one of the soldiers. It is a fascinating insight into the coexistence of different confessions in the “holy land”, which offers here. Geographical proximity does not necessarily mean interest – and even less understanding of one another.

Is what is also evident from the statements of the church people. When the organ played and the others could no longer perform their services, it is even more beautiful than usual, being a Catholic, is Father Robert Jauch. Anyway, all Christian denominations were abolished in Catholicism. Why come out because all the other claims, he does not seem to be able to understand.

In a similarly powerful position is Patriarch Theophilos III. The Greek Orthodox monks are the masters of the access to the grave. About the other monks, he can only grin. You have only small corners of the church, which they defend fiercely against each other. The Ethiopians are worst. Because they could pay their taxes, not centuries ago, they lost their right and now live in an annexe to the roof. The earth is a vale of tears anyway, they console themselves, and the reward you get in the hereafter. With the other, they fight over each candle, and not hesitate to scare the faithful of other churches to chase, if their prayer time is up, even before changing the interior of the church to trace such inscriptions – any restaurateur would turn the stomach.

Every square inch of the church is one of the groups, prayer times are governed by a complicated system, and in each niche becomes jealous care that not even a candle is claimed by the others. Unfulfilled Putzpläne can lead to shift rights of each holiday, the only leads to changes in the prayer schedule.

, Who is wondering about the constant power struggles still, brother Jayasaleem, a Franciscan from India. He only lived a few weeks ago in the church. Jayasaleems effort to see in the forced Urbanization something positive, is pathetic. He was trying to, at least, always perfect, “Buon Giorno” and “Good Morning” to say, he explains, “but I am not fully successful.” For most of living here in such exchanges are not interested. Father Robert as pursuing other goals: He wants to be holy. And that seems to be the best on its own.

Statements like these are the best moments of the film. You ask yourself, understand what these men in their faith at all. The common belief in the Christian God in any event does not combine. Listen to you while enumerating the communities, who feel held back the others, in itself, as they try to settle a playground dispute. Sometimes the laughter, sometimes deeply sad – for instance if an Easter procession are degenerating into a fist fight.

From this power struggle and Muslim neighbors are not excluded. Two Palestinian families share – also for centuries – the right to the door to the church daily, and to lock-on: one keeps the keys that others may use it. Even among them there is controversy as to which law is older and more important. Thus, they show the director their medals and photographs of prominent dignitaries – which are bigger, who is more important?

Between the interviews with the religious representatives Schomerus again shows the exterior of the church. Her gentle architecture stands in stark contrast to the struggles that take place within them. Although these long shots show what could be a quiet place, the Church to be, but unfortunately also bored. Despite its high-voltage story and the charismatic figures is the director succeeded therefore not entirely a riveting film. Too little experimentation, he shows, instead, it relies entirely on its protagonists. Nevertheless, In my Father’s house are many mansions: a worthwhile film. It offers insights into human nature and its weaknesses – even before those aspiring saints are not immune.

(Claire Horst)

Title: In my Father’s house are many mansions Country of production: Min Germany, Switzerland Year of production: 2010 Length: 89 ( ) of material: X-Hire

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