We have arrived! The other claimants of where the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary. The Basilica is built over the building that is claimed to be the house where Mary lived. According to this denomination the angel appeared to her in the house. The other lot, Greek Orthodox claims that the angel appeared to her at a well - now known as Mary's well. Their church is built over that well. The Coptic Orthodox Church of the Annunciation can also be found in Nazareth. They only built in the 1950's on an available premise, not claiming it to be THE SPOT.
What is claimed to be Mary's house, can be seen at the back behind the trellises.
Funny thing is that when you enter the Basilica, your knees must be covered. This guy borrowed a scarf from one of the women travelling with us. He is inside, so the solution was accepted.
The plaque in front of the Basilica, stating their claim.
One glaring issue that pops up, is that the early Christians in the first two centuries, would not think of praying to Mary or in any other way be devoted to her. The Apostolic Creed of Faith dates from the early 2nd century and requires no devotion to Mary. The practice of devotion to Mary comes later during Byzantine times, when the RC church started to organise itself. The first church on this site resulted from Emperor Constantine ordering his mother Helena to build churches at places with religious significance. Yes, there were four earlier churches, each one of them razed during various Muslim conquests. The Franciscan order are the wards of this site and their priests paid the price with every conquest.