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A metochion was essentially an ecclesiastical embassy church representing an autocephalous ("self-headed" or autonomous) branch of the Orthodox Church. It was also the parish of a monastery or patriarch. This is one of the more stately Feneriote mansions in the city, set on the edge of green wedged between the coastal highway and a narrow and deadly section of Mürselpasa Caddesi. From 1686 to 1967, when the Turkish government confiscated the building, the metochion served as the residence and representative of the Monastery of St. Catherine on Mount Sinai. The untidy accouterments of a family of squatters litter the courtyard of the adjacent chapel and monastery of St. John the Baptist, but it may be a relief to know that the present residents are only squatting on an 18th-century reconstruction of the chapel. With the frenzy of restoration projects being carried out in advance of Istanbul 2010, it is only a matter of time before the site is reclaimed and visitors are able to tour the complex.