The name Qasr El Yehud is the Arabic name for the church of John the Baptist. The Christian rite of baptism is rooted in the Jewish tradition of ritual ablutions in a unique bath called a mikvah. Water must enter and leave the mikvah on its own. For this reason, the best mikvah is the river. John the Baptist baptized Jesus in these places. Monasteries and shelters for Christian pilgrims seeking to baptism in the Jordan River have been built along the banks of the stream for centuries.