The Templars were an active Catholic military order for almost 200 years until their demise. They were among the most skilled combat units of the Crusade period, also managing large Christian economic infrastructures and building their own network of nearly 1,000 commanderies and fortifications across Europe and the Middle East. Over time, their power waned and as public distrust of their secrecy grew, King Philip IV of France seized the opportunity to settle his own debts.
Meeting with Dr. Eliezer Stern of the Israel Antiquities Authority inside a church in the coastal city of Acre, Mr. Lin asked, “Was this where the Templars actually hung out?
Dr Eliezer Stern replied: “No, no, it’s not the Templar, we are in the right place, but at the wrong time.
“If we want to see the Templar building, we have to go down below this church. ”
The two men headed for the street, where Dr Stern revealed a door “to another world”.
Mr. Lin said, “It’s like a movie, we walk into a secret door behind a store.
“Wow, this is amazing.”
Upon entering the huge complex, Dr Eliezer Stern explained how the caves have been used for two centuries.
READ MORE: Knights Templar: The Truth Behind The Secret Order’s Disappearance Revealed By 700-Year-Old Document
“The arches look like the church above, but if you look closely, the Templar masonry work is completely another architecture.
“The stones are much larger than the 19th century building.
“It was famous during the Crusader days that many stones had masonry marks.
“When you find something that you can connect with the people who built this building, it’s so exciting for me.”
The couple then walked down 10 feet into a “secret chamber” inside the caves to reveal larger, open spaces.
Dr Stern said they served a vital purpose.
He said in 2019: “This is a huge underground water reservoir.
“The Holy Land is very, very warm. We are in the Middle East and you need access to water. ”
Dr. Stern has so far searched three of the 25,000 gallon tanks and he believes there are many more.