April 13, 2010

Russians Save Zacchaeus' Sycamore Tree

12 April 2010

Russian botanists have saved one of the most famous trees in history - the ancient Gospels sycamore tree.

The tree was dying, termites lived there and its branches were dry. The experts got rid of the termites, cut down dry branches and the tree has become green again, even small fruit appeared on it.

According to St. Luke's Gospels, when Christ was passing through Jericho where Zacchaeus lived, the latter sought to see the Savior and climbed up a sycamore tree. Christ saw him and decided to stop in his house. Zacchaeus was deeply touched and promised to give fourfold to those whom he offended when he collected taxes.

The land lot where the Biblical sycamore tree grows has recently been transferred to Russia for building a cultural center.

"Russia is not just coming back to the holy places. Russia is coming back with new offers, new projects. The Russian House that is to be built here witness to the fact that hopefully Russia is coming back here forever," head of the Presidential Property Management Department of the Russian Federation Vladimir Kozhin told the Pervy Canal.