JOPPA – means (“height,” “beauty”)
Joppa is immediately south of Tel Aviv and is a part of “greater” Tel Aviv. It is 30 miles south of Caesarea and 40 miles northwest of Jerusalem. It has a recorded history of 3,500 years. Under Solomon, Jaffa became Jerusalem’s seaport (too shallow to be a great port as passengers & cargo had to be loaded to smaller boats off shore). During the Jewish rebellion of 66 A.D., 8,000 Jews were killed here. Crusader Richard the Lion-Hearted built an immense citadel here, but an army under Saladin managed to take it and slaughtered 20,000 Christians in the process. It was razed by Napoleon in 1799 and later rebuilt by the Turks. Janne Sjodahl, a Mormon missionary in the 1880s, baptized two Arab men into the Church, near the place where Peter had his vision extending the Gospel to non-Jews. The first Zionist pioneers of the 19th century entered the Promised Land through Jaffa harbor, but the harbor is scarcely used today. On the top of a hill near the seashore is the Monastery of Saint Peter, marking the traditional site of Peter’s vision of the great sheet; and nearby is a small mosque in the little alley close to the lighthouse, built on the traditional site of the House of Simon the Tanner.