With the official approval from The Dominican order, UNESCO – in close collaboration with relevant authorities - will now start the stabilization and rehabilitation of The Conventual Church of Our Lady of the Hour in Mosul. This Project’s component will include all the phases of a stabilization/rehabilitation project (from site clearance and initial survey to the preparation of the detailed design for the actual execution of the works), which will create a unique ‘on the-job training’ opportunity for local heritage professionals and craftsmen. In fact, the actual implementation of this component will be closely integrated with the long-term capacity building program foreseen within the scope of the Project.
The Conventual Church of Our Lady of the Hour (Al-Saa’a Church) lies at the heart of the Old City of Mosul, at the junction of the two main streets that cut through the historic urban fabric. Built at the end of the XIX century, it has always been considered as one of the iconic landmarks of the Old City of Mosul.
Centre of many spiritual, cultural and educational activities, the church became a living example of the brotherhood between Moslawis, covering religious, cultural and social functions.
Its architectural and heritage value is important as well. Each viewer coming from Nineveh or Al-Farouq Street would see the Al-Hadba Minaret first then the bell tower of the Conventual Church of Our Lady of the Hour, or vice-versa. This architectural and urban feature is engraved in the memory and history of the people and of the city and is emblematic of the cultural diversity and peaceful co-existence between its communities.
In October 2019, the stabilization and rehabilitation of the Conventual Church of Our Lady of the Hour was included as one of the main outputs in the UAE funded UNESCO Project ‘Reviving the Spirit of Mosul by rebuilding its historic landmarks’, along with the Al Tahera Syriac Catholic Church and the Al Nouri Mosque complex.
UNESCO is fostering reconciliation and social cohesion in Mosul through the restoration and reconstruction of emblematic historical sites as part of UNESCO’s international initiative “Revive the Spirit of Mosul”. The rehabilitation of this church is important not only because of its value as cultural heritage, but also as a testimony to the diversity of the city, a proud crossroads of cultures and a peaceful haven for different religious communities over the centuries.
Find out more: https://en.unesco.org/fieldoffice/baghdad/projects