Reji Church

Reji Church

It is the small square that you will end up when you take the Kazancı Bedih Street to the east. The Square is actually a crossroad of four streets. As it is surrounded by Kurtuluş Primary School, Nimetullah Mosque, Şeyh Saffet Tekke (Dervish lodge), Muhammed Muhiddin Mausoleum, and Reji Church, it is referred to as Hoşgörü (Tolerance) square. The most interesting structure on the square is the Reji Church. Serving as a cultural centre today, it is originally an ancient Syrian church. The structure was built on the remains of a church from the 6th century in 1861. As the church was built in the name of two apostles of Prophet Jesus, its original name is the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul. The reason why it is commonly known as Reji Church is that it was used as a tobacco factory and grape storage by then Administration of Monopolies (Tekel İdaresi) in 1924. Local people adopted the French word “regie” for “tekel/idare” (monopoly/administration) as the name of the church. Until the Syrians of Urfa emigrated to Aleppo in 1924, this building had been used as a church.