Amazing Coptic churches in Africa
First of all, let’s remember who the Copts are. The Copts are an Egyptian subgroup who mainly lives in Northeast Africa, usually in Egypt, and they are the largest Christian denomination in the country. They are the largest denomination in Sudan and Libya as well. Their ancestry is mostly Egyptian and in the past, they spoke the Coptic language. The Copts built amazing churches in Egypt and nearby countries.
Saint Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral
This church is located in the Abbassia District of Cairo, Egypt. It is the seat of the Coptic Orthodox Pope, making it one of the most important churches. It was dedicated to St. Mark the Evangelist, an apostle of Jesus and also the founder of the Coptic Church. It is the largest cathedral in Africa and the Middle East. The land where this cathedral stands has been used for centuries as a cemetery for the Copts and it is rumored that the tomb of Alexander the Great is located there.
The Hanging Church
This church is one of the oldest and most famous churches in Egypt. Early travelers to Cairo named this church “The Staircase Church” because there is a staircase with 29 steps leading to the entrance. This is the most famous Coptic Christian Church in Cairo and possibly the first one built in the style of a basilica. It has twin bell towers, a courtyard decorated with some biblical art designs and a small courtyard leading to the outer porch.
Saint Barbara Church in Coptic Cairo
This church is located in the eastern part of Babylon Fortress and is also one of the oldest buildings in Cairo. Like many other Coptic churches, it has been rebuilt several times. It’s famous for its many precious items that are kept at the Coptic Museum, which is only 2 minutes away from the church on foot. It was built in the shape of the ancient basilicas, having an entrance, a narthex, a long nave, several aisles, and three sanctuaries. The middle sanctuary is dedicated to St. Barbara.
Saints Sergius and Bacchus Church
This church is also known as Abu Serga. It is one of the oldest Coptic churches in Egypt. It is traditionally believed that it was built on the spot where the Holy Family, Joseph, Mary and the infant Jesus Christ rested at the end of their journey to Egypt. It is also famous because many of the patriarchs of the Coptic Church were elected there. The church is dedicated to Sergius and Bacchus.
The Church of the Virgin Mary at Zeitoun
The church was built by Tawfik Khalil Ibrahim as a miniature version of the famous Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey. The site on which the church was built is supposedly another location where the Holy Family stayed during their trip to Egypt. It is also famous for its supernatural phenomena. People there have seen the Holy Virgin Mary kneeling next to the big cross located on the largest dome of the church.