Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam

Work progress

Update 25 July Marj Alhamam 2006: The consulting engineer has begun work on the multiple necessary specifications and plans for the site. The consultant engineers are the "Office of Engineer Samir Sa'ad", of which Mr Samir Sa’ad is the director. We expect them to supply the plans of the project and obtain the necessary permits from the Town Council over the next few weeks. In this way with the grace of God we are on course for the work to have begun by September 2006.

The project will consist of a hall, 35 metres in length, 20 in width with a height of 4.5 metres.  The Church itself will be larger with a length of 40 metres, a width of 20 metres and a height in the centre of 12.5 metres and at the sides 7 metres.  The body of the church will be able to hold up to 800 people while the car parks will have an area of 2000 square metres.


 Surveying  works on the church site, 26. Nov. 2006

Update 26 November 2006 Marj Alhamam: As of today’s date the following specification work has taken place: specifications for the site, the foundations, the construction, electrical and  mechanical work. The building plans have been submitted to the relevant departments and so on with Marj Alhamam Town Council.  As regards tenders, the consulting engineer is ready to put them out to contractors in the very near future.

Update 18 December 2006 Marj Alhamam: The opening of the tenders for building the Church which had been sent to the contractors has taken place in the Latin Vicariate in Amman in the presence of the Most Reverend Salim Sayegh and members of the diocesan Finance Committee. The tender is for the initial work. Materials for the project will be supplied by the owner or Vicariate and not by the contractor. The contract, as is set out in the tender, is solely for construction work on the project and not for the materials for the building.

Contract of the church building between the Latin Vicariate and the contractor, 20. January. 2007

Update 23January 2007 Marj Alhamam: The contract has been signed for the building of the Church between the Latin Vicariate represented by Reverend Father Azzam Jaser Director of the Vicariate Finance Department, and the engineer, Mr Samir Nemat, owner of the Samir Nemat Co. and his partners as contractors. Samir Nemat and Co. provided the best price among the contractors who tendered bids.

The contract covers the specifications for the initial work on the construction of the building by the contractor and at the same time the Vicariate will be responsible for the necessary supplies of material for the building work. The cost of the construction work which the contractor is to undertake amounts to 135279.150 Jordanian Dinars. The second stage of the project is to finish the building. This will depend on the level of revenue and the rate of donations.

Calculations by the consulting engineer, Mr Samir Sa’ad, show that the total costs of the first stage covered by the contract amount to within a shade of 450,000 Dinars (135,000 Dinars for the construction work by the contractors and 315,000  Dinars cost of materials). The second and the third stages of the project consist of fitting out and furnishing the Church as necessary. At present we are just about, God willing, to start the first stage of the foundations or structure of the building.

Update 2 February 2007 Marj Alhamam:  The permit to build the Church has now been granted by Marj Alhamam Town Council. The permit is free from municipal duties and the tax on licences under a Jordanian law which exempts places of worship from taxes and duties. Work will start on the project within a few days provided that the consultants give the go ahead to the contractors. At present the huts have been completed for the workers and an office for the consultants who will oversee the project.


Construction materials were brought to the church site, site of construction, 10. Feb. 2007 

A jackhammer starts to prepare building site of the church, 25. Feb. 2007

Update 25 February 2007 Marj Alhamam: Work has now begun with tidying up and preliminary work on foundation trenches and levelling of the site.


3. March. 2007


A daily good breakfast is needed to get enough energy for hard and challenging working day, 4. March. 2007


Works of tidying up and levelling the site almost finished,  works on foundation trenches and construction will start soon. 28. March. 2007.


Forman Abdallah Farhood, Project Manager Wassim Neemat....Consultant Engineers: Peter Wakila, Samir Saad & Nasser Oweis, 3April.2007

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God!


First quantity of steel bars on the project site, 3 April 2007......You need strong mussels to do this job, 4 April 2007


Parish Priest, Fr. Hanna Kildani & Contractor Eng. Samir Nemat. 5 April 2007-               Foundations blinding concrete,16 April 2007

Update 9 April 2007 Marj Alhamam: The mechanical excavation work has now finished and manual work is beginning on levelling and marking out the foundations according to the plan of the building.  Deliveries of building supplies to the site have also begun with steel, cement, sand, bricks…etc.

Update 16 April 2007 Marj Alhamam: Works on foundations blinding concrete started.

22.4.2007. Father Hanna

I had been meaning to send you an email because I was having difficulty translating your latest up date because there was not a direct translation in my dictionary but see that you have now done it. I have also learnt a new English expression "blinding concrete" which I had not come across before! Interestingly the French is "beton de proprete" which is close to the Arabic and which I discovered when looking for "blinding concrete" on the internet.

Good to see more progress being made
Warmest wishes


Experience is passing from one generation to an other. Contractor Eng. Samir Nemat, 33 year of experience, discussing construction issues with his son, Project Manager, Wassim Nemat, a graduate in computer science. 17 April 2007. Reinforced concrete1 May 2007

Update 1 May 2007 Marj Alhamam: Works on foundations blinding concrete almost finished. Works on foundations reinforced concrete started.

Update 5 May 2007 Marj Alhamam: Concreting the foundations with ready mixed concrete.


Concreting the foundation with ready mixed concrete, 5 May 2007

Update  30 May 2007: Works on building the walls and columns of the hall started.


All the works of the building infrastructure are over, mainly the entire foundations. Building the walls and columns of the hall started today 30 May 2007----------------19 June 2007

5 July 2007

Update 6 July 2007: Mrs. Laurice Naber has made her first visit to the new church site. Mrs. Naber lives in New York; her family were the first donors to the church building project. Because of their generous donation we were able to start the project. Other donors followed their lead and backed the project, so we can now realize the parishioners’ dream and get on with building a beautiful church for the glory of God, in the district of Marj Alhamam. Parish Priest, Fr. Hanna Kildani and the members of Christian Mothers Association and ladies of the parish received Mrs. Naber and her daughter Domia, who lives in Amman. A detailed presentation on the progress of the project was made to the distinguished guests.

 Laurice Naber & her daughter Domia Naber

10 August 2007, building of stone walls started, and formwork is going on.


Update 10 August 2007:  Building of stone walls started, and formwork going on.

Update 18 September 2007:  The ceremony for the Blessing and Laying of the Foundation Stone has taken place, under the patronage of His Beatitude Mgr Michel Sabbah, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem. For more details click on the following links from: 1 to 5 1  2  3   4  5   

Update 23 October 2007: The concreting of the roof slab was completed in five hours today using ready mixed concrete. The area of the hall roof is 750 square meters, and 192.5 cubic meters of ready mix were used. 

Update 23 October 2007: The concreting of the roof slab was completed in five hours today using ready mixed concrete. The area of the hall roof is 750 square meters, and 192.5 cubic meters of ready mix were used. 

Hall and bell tower, 13 October 2007

Update 7 December 2007: Now that the concreting of the roof slab is complete, work on constructing the church columns and walls has started. The columns of the church entrance are already installed and the entrance will be completed later.

Update 20 January 2008: The contractors working on building the Church and hall are now erecting the massive retaining wall to the north of the site, following work on the entrance to the Church. The entrance will be built of reinforced concrete and will rest on concrete pillars. It will be formed at the lower level of a covered area in front of the hall.  The entrance will enable pedestrians and cars coming from the road to the north of the site to gain access to the main door of the Church. The car park at ground level outside the hall will have access to the Church by stairs and a lift both of which will be inside the belfry tower which will be some 22 metres high.

Update 22 June 2008: Construction of the retaining wall on the North side of the church and of the entrance to the church on the West side has been completed. The entrance area is 300 square metres and 110 cubic metres of reinforced concrete were used in its construction. The work currently being undertaken consists of building the main façade to the church as well as the walls and supporting pillars. So far to date the walls and pillars have been built to a height of 4 metres and the contractor is taking in hand construction of the sacristy which is a functional room for the church.

Update 22 June 2008: Church entrance 300 M2, 110 M3 of reinforced concrete.

Update 9 August 2008: Church entrance and façade

Update 9 August 2008: After completing the church entrance in reinforced concrete, the contractor are now working on the façade to the entrance and have also now built the pillars to a height of 10 metres and the walls to 5 metres. They are carrying on with the work on the main body of the church and the sacristy (a side room serving the church).  The stairway connecting the convent and the church has also been built and now allows direct access from the convent to the church making the church and the convent into a single complex.

Update 21 September 2008: Church windows details.

Update 17th November 2008: Today as you approach the front of the Church you see the main door and the four side windows. In the next few weeks work will be finishing on the front. Work on the South façade of the Church has now been completed and the area is ready for   the concrete arches to be put in to support the roof of the building. The arches will be built up to the level of five layers of stonework. On the North façade all is ready for the stone cladding to be put in over the concrete and scaffolding has already been erected to do this.   The shape of the sanctuary area can be clearly made out and shortly the walls around it will have reached a height of 3 metres or 6 metres from the foundations. Our expectation is that the basic work on the main structure will have been finished by the beginning of May 2009 and then on arriving you will see a building with roofing and all the concrete arches complete.

Update 18 November 2008: Stairs, linking between  presbytery and church.

Update 18 November 2008: Church entrance, west elevation.

Update 18 November 2008: North elevation, (down) the hall, (up) the windows of the church, not not completed yet.

Update 18 November 2008: South elevation, the constructions works are now completed in this part of the church.

Update 18 November 2008: The mezzanine floor 

Update 18 November 2008: The altar area, under construction, East elevation.

Church entrance (west) 6/12/2008

Church entrance & tribune (west),  the photo was taken from inside the church, 6/12/2008

Window details , entrance, (west) 6/12/2008

South elevation, 6/12/2008

Update 18 December 2008: Benedict McHugo, (England), writes: 

I first heard about the Marj Alhamam church building project over two years ago. Then it was still at the initial planning stage and existed only on paper with plans and specifications still being worked on. Since, great steps forward have been made and it is now recognisably a church under construction.

 Father Hanna very kindly invited me to stay with him during my recent trip to visit churches and schools in Jordan. I thoroughly enjoyed my stay in Marj Alhamam and am most grateful to him. I was delighted to see the progress.

 The church now rises above the Latin Convent Building and will soon tower over the area providing a focal point for travellers on the main road. The traditional design recalls the very first basilicas built in Jordan in early Christian times. When it is finished it will be a landmark with its gleaming white stone walls and red tile roof providing a beacon of inspiration to all and recalling the presence in Jordan of Christianity since its earliest days.

 Rapid progress is now being made. The outer walls are nearing their full height. Work is under way on the pillars to support the higher walls to the main nave. Once these have been built the concrete roofing can be installed which is expected to be in place by late spring next year. The church structure will then be complete and work can start on fitting it out.

 Fitting out and furnishing the church will be very expensive so the timetable will be determined largely by the rate at which funds can be raised. This is a challenge but the sight of the largely complete church building will provide an incentive to fundraising and let us pray that the necessary resources can be found reasonably quickly.

 A church building provides a home for the community who worship in it and is a focal point for their sharing and support of each other. I was overwhelmed by the warmth of the welcome from everyone I met in your community in Marj Alamam. The Children’s Advent Service was beautiful with so many taking part under the guidance of the novices and postulants of St Joseph’s Convent. It was a great success with all involved having worked very hard to prepare for it. Sunday Mass was a joy to attend and it was most interesting to see the Year of St Paul being celebrated with a different parishioner each week giving a short talk on their personal thoughts on an aspect of the life of St Paul. Father Hanna provided a warm welcome to everyone and it was lovely to see him caring for his flock.

 Many, many  thanks to all of you and very warmest wishes for a blessed and holy Christmas and a happy and peaceful New Year.

Update: 3 March 2009: There has been a   short delay for a few days in the work on the church because of the torrential rain which we have been having. The roof will be constructed of four concrete sections with the central section having a width of 10 metres. Currently work is being completed on concreting the two side sections, each with a width of 5 metres. In the coming weeks the contractor’s attention will turn to the sanctuary roof which is relatively small to cover the area and to the central concrete roofing section which is very large (33 metres length, 10 metres width and at a height of 12.5 metres). On completion of the main concrete roofing, the major building work on the church will be drawing to an end. Still to be done will remain the completion of the bell tower and the outside works of which the most important are the courtyards   and the surrounding walls. No decision has yet been taken on the fitting out in view of the current lack of funding.

Marj Alhamam 3 January 2009: His Beatitude Patriarch Fouad Twal, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, visits the new church site.  His Beatitude is accompanied by Fr. Wissam Mansour, Fr. Khalil Jaar and Fr. Sami Totah

Marj Alhamam: 14th June 2009: The last of the reinforced concrete for the building was poured into place a few days ago in an operation taking 8 hours. This means that nearly all the main work will have been finished leaving the belfry and the surrounding courtyards to be completed. We now have left in the project fund approximately two thousand Dinars which will be devoted to the remaining essential works. I am firmly of the view that it will be necessary to delay work on the church because of the reduction in the level of financing and the exhaustion of nearly all our present funds. We have made the Latin Patriarchate aware of this and the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, His Beatitude Fouad Twal, has intimated his concerns about the matter and has promised to do his best in the light of the need of the Patriarchate to balance priorities as well as his strong desire to see the completion of the project as quickly as possible. We are hoping that support from donors and the Patriarchate will enable us in due course to make an announcement about the finishing works. As of now the Parish of Marj Alhamam has celebrated the occasion of the pouring of the last concrete with a party for parishioners serving Kenafa pastries.

The building site, June 2009





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"One thing have I asked of the LORD,  that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD    and to inquire in his temple". (Ps.27)