During the latter half of the fifth century, the center of Christian monasticism shifted from Egypt to the Holy Land. Various places were filled with scholars who were responsible for the spiritual revival of the period and played an important role in the development of the liturgy and dogma.

The most prominent monastic centers lie to the east of Beit Sahour in the Judean wilderness. Beit Sahour is the best departure point from which to visit the monasteries of St. Theodosius, St. Sabas and St. Chariton.