If churches were assessed by their risk factor, Abuna Yemata Guh would be our new Sistine Chapel. Perched 650 feet above a steep cliff in Northern Ethiopia, visitors face a 45-minute climb up the cliff’s vertical face in order to access the precariously positioned church.
source/image: Great Big Story
At 2,500 feet, Ethiopa’s “church in the sky” is arguably the most inaccessible place of worship on earth.Dating back to the 5th century, history has it that its founder Father Yemata built the chapel to be closer to heavenly spirits; however, others claim it was a strategic move to avoid his enemies.
The paintings on the walls and domes of the church are preserved in a reasonable state. Extensive study was undertaken to understand the reason behind this phenomenon.
The design of the traceries in the church replicates those found in nearby churches of Gher’alta, such as Debre Tsion church. There are more paintings depicting figures from the Old Testament than from the New Testament.