The initial building was founded by [[Constantine the Great]] in 335, after he had removed a pagan temple on the site that was possibly the Temple of Aphrodite built by Hadrian. Constantine had sent his mother St. [[Helen]] to find the site; during excavations she is said to have discovered the [[True Cross]]. The church was built around the excavated hill of the Crucifixion and was actually three connected churches built over the three different holy sites, including a great basilica (the ''[[Martyrium]]'' visited by the nun [[Egeria]] in the 380s), an enclosed colonnaded atrium (the ''Triportico'') built around the traditional Rock of Calvary, and a rotunda, called the ''Anastasis'' ("Resurrection"), which contained the remains of the cave that St. Helen and St. [[
Makarios I of Jerusalem|Macarius]], [[Patriarch of Jerusalem]], had identified with the burial site of Jesus. The surrounding rock was cut away, and the Tomb was encased in a structure called the ''Edicule'' (from the Latin ''aediculum'', small building) in the center of the rotunda. The dome of the rotunda was completed by the end of the 4th century.
This building was damaged by fire in 614 when the Persians under [[w:Khosrau II|Khosrau II]] invaded Jerusalem and captured the Cross. In 630, Emperor [[Heraclius]], who had captured the Cross from the Persians, marched triumphantly into Jerusalem and restored the True Cross to the rebuilt Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
There is another version of the story. After Prince Ibrahim Pasha, Mohammed Ali Pasha's son, had conquered [[Jerusalem]] and Syria in the year 1832 A.D., he invited the [[Coptic]] [[Pope]] [[Peter VII (Mankarius) of Alexandria|Peter VII]] to visit Jerusalem and attend to the service of the appearance of the light on Bright Saturday from the Sepulchre of the Lord Christ in Jerusalem as the Greek Orthodox [[Patriarch]]s did every year. The Pope accepted the invitation, and when he arrived, he was received with honor and reverence and he entered Jerusalem with a great procession and a splendid celebration, in which the governor, the rulers and the heads of the different Christian Churches participated. He realized with his wisdom that if he ministered alone in the Holy Sepulchre that would cause animosity between the Copts and the Greeks. The Pope asked the Pasha to relieve him from this service, but he asked him to participate with the Greek Patriarch on the condition that he would be their third, for he doubted the authenticity of the light. On Bright Saturday the church of the Holy Sepulchre was crowded with the worshipers, and the Pasha ordered the people to evacuate the church to the spacious outer courtyard. When the time to start the service came the two Patriarchs and the Pasha entered the Holy Sepulchre to pray the customary prayers. In the specific time, the light burst out of the Sepulchre in a way that terrified the Pasha, who became dazed and confused, and the Pope attended to him until he recovered. The people outside in the courtyard were not deprived from the blessing of the light since one of the pillars of the western gate of the church split and the light appeared to them from the pillar. This incident increased the reverence and respect of the Pope before the Pasha. His holiness the Pope made many repairs and renovations in the church of the resurrection.<ref>[http://www.copticchurch.net/synaxarium/g_4_6_2006.html#2 The Departure of Pope Peter (Petros) VII, the One Hundred and Ninth Patriarch] Coptic Orthodox Synaxarium</ref>
==The Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulchre==
*[http://ocafs.oca.org/FeastSaintsViewer.asp?SID=4&ID=1&FSID=102593 Commemoration of the Founding of the Church of the Resurrection (Holy Sepulchre) at Jerusalem] ([[OCA]])
*[http://www.trekker.co.il/english/israel-sep.htm Church of the Holy Sepulchre - Jerusalem Travel Information]
*[http://home.infionline.net/~ddisse/egeria.html Itinerarium Egeriae] Egeria's description in the 380s
*[http://www.holylandphotos.org/browse.asp?s=1,2,6,19,321 Church of Holy Sepulcher] Holy Land Photos
*[http://www.orthodoxphotos.com/Holy_Land/Holy_Sepulchre_Church/index.shtml The Church of the Holy Sepulchre or Sacred Tomb] Orthodoxphotos.com
holysepulchre.com/ Church of the Holy Sepulchre] Visitor information and detailed history of the building.
*[http://news.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=662901 ''Christian fist fight at Holy Sepulchre''] 08:29 AEST Mon Nov 10 2008. ninemsn.
*[http://www.mfa.gov.il/mfa/mfaarchive/1990_1999/1999/9/the%20tomb%20of%20christ The Tomb of Christ]. Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 5 September, 1999.
[[fr:Église de la Résurrection (Jérusalem)]]
[[ro:Biserica Sfântului Mormânt]]