The identification of the "Northern Hall" as a refectory should be discarded, due to the absence of benches, or menzae. A continuous wall also separated it from the western wing, where the kitchen and the oven were located.
The original chancel screen was wider than the present one, lying over the eastern part of the prayer hall, that was earlier connected with the "Northern Hall". The only alternative where the wide chancel screen could stand is the "Reunion Room". Its mosaic floor and the two inscriptions, one at its entrance and the second - in its center, indicate the importance of this hall. If so, this hall served in Phase 1 as the monastic chapel, and the hall to its south served as its oratory, or diakonikon!. A similar layout is encountered in the Dominus Flevit monastic chapel on Mt. of Olives. The wider hall there, that had a chancel screen and an altar, is identified in a Greek inscription in front of the chancel as ekklesia, the second hall, smaller and without a chancel screen and an altar, is identified by a Greek inscription there as eukterion / oratory.
The absence of any pilaster attached to its extant, southern wall, suggest that the "Northern Hall" was roofed by wooden beams resting on the lateral walls; likewise the chapel to its south, to which pilasters were added only in Phase 2, when the passage between the two halls was blocked. It seems that the architectural modification was a result of ceiling collapse. Perhaps resulting from an earthquake. The wider, "Northern Hall", was also set on looser ground (see the N-S cross section). The collapse seems to had led to its abandonment; the doors connecting it with the "Eastern Room" and to the hall to its south were blocked. The southern hall became the new chapel; six pilasters that carried three arches were placed along its walls in order to better retain the ceiling. The chancel screen and the altar were moved here, and an excessive chancel piece, becoming redundant in the narrower hall, was set aside. The "Eastern Room" - the former skeuophylakion of the original chapel, was blocked off in Phase 2.