We walk into Tarsus, St. Paul’s hometown. A refurbished stone church here receives pilgrims from Italy: St. Paul’s Church. There is a café that serves Turkish coffee across from a pension: St. Paul Café. There are stone foundations of an old Roman house: St. Paul’s house (maybe). And there is St. Paul’s well. The well mixes Hellenistic, Roman, and even Islamic features. Busloads of faithful come to sip its water. They say it is curative.
“The water comes from the municipal supply,” Hakan Erkul says. “Who can say what miracles faith can cause?”
Erkul is a friendly, thickset, sleepy-eyed man and an apostle himself—the lone tourism booster in Tarsus.
Aside from St. ...