The nature of the relationship between God and Jesus was first agreed by the church at the First Council of Nicaea, then part of the Roman Empire, in 325 AD. Held by Constantine I, the first emperor to convert to Christianity, the council brought bishops from across the world to the shores of Lake Ascanius to agree the particulars of their faith. Archaeologist Mustafa Şahin has spent years scouring the shores of the modern-day lake, Lake Iznik in Turkey, searching for historical treasures from that time.

But it was only when the government of Bursa Province commissioned some aerial photos of the lake that he spotted a church submerged in its waters. “The photography team in Bursa City Hall have been capturing the aerial photos of the Lake since 2013, but hadn’t thought of contacting any expert,” said Dr Şahin. “So when they started capturing aerial pictures of the lake again, team member Saffet Yilmaz contacted me and asked if the remains of the structure might have meant something. “When I first saw the images of the lake, I was quite surprised to see a church structure that clearly. READ MORE