Religious ceremony delayed by religious brawl


Daylife/AP Photo by Bernat Armangue

An unusual sight greeted Jerusalem police as they entered one of Christianity’s holiest sites Sunday morning: dozens of monks punching and kicking each other in a massive brawl.

Monks from the Greek Orthodox and Armenian denominations were preparing for a ceremony at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in the Old City when a disagreement led to a full-fledged fistfight.

The fight began when Armenian clergy were holding a procession to commemorate the finding of the cross believed to have been used in the crucifixion of Jesus.

The Greek members of the clergy wanted one of their monks present for fear that the procession would undermine their claim to an ancient structure built on what is believed to be the tomb of Jesus.

Many among the dozens of monks came away with cuts and bruises, said police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld.

Let’s hear it for Christian love. Or is this Quest for Control and Power?

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