Saint George was, according to tradition, a Roman soldier and priest in the Guard of Diocletian, who is venerated as a Christian martyr. In hagiography Saint George is one of the most venerated saints in the Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Church, Eastern Orthodox Churche, Oriental Orthodox Church and the
The Feast of Saint George is a palestinian holiday commemorating Saint George (known as al-Khadr in Palestinian culture), supposed to be originated during the Byzantine rule of
The same tradition continues today, with many Christian pilgrims coming to give sacrifices and baptize their children, due to the abundance stories about the healing properties of the St. George. Noteworthy, the Feast of St. George is one of the rare Christian rituals where an animal is sacrificed within the monastery. The most common animal slaughtered is the sheep. On the morning of 6 May, Greek Orthodox Christians from Beit Jala,
Traditionally, Muslims guard the entrance of the church and welcome pilgrims. As the Christians, the Muslims too sacrifice sheep during the feast and offerings are stored in a sheep pen in the garden of the monastery. In Islam, two sacrifices are offered: The first is the dhabihah, which requires that one-third of the immolated lamb be set aside for consumption by its owner, while the remaining two-thirds are for Allah and given as charity. The second offering is that of a live animal, bequeathed as a gift to St. George.
Muslim signs dot the courtyard of the monastery and traces of the sacrifices are evident in the form of the lamb hides left on the balustrades to dry.