Churches in Saudi Arabia

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Question from Anonymous on 5/12/2008:

Has there ever been, at any point in history, actual Christian churches, meaning church buildings, within the boundaries of what is now Saudi Arabia? I heard that the Vatican is in negotiations with the Saudi government to build a Catholic church in Saudi Arabia. Thanks!
Answer by David Gregson on 5/22/2008:

According to tradition, St. Bartholomew brought Christianity to the Arabian peninsula. Arab bishops are mentioned as being present at the Council of Nicaea, 325. Christianity seems have been established in the northern part of the peninsula by the Assyrian Church, which was Nestorian, and in the south (Yemen) by the Western Church. With the spread of Islam, however, Christianity died out there.

Yes, negotiations are underway to build the first Catholic Church in Saudi Arabia since the disappearance of Christianity from that region in the first millennium.

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