According to Coptic Church is ‘altar’ of Mary in Al-Muharraq Monastery. The site where the Holy Family is believed to have settled for a period of more than six months; and the altar-stone was the bed on which the Infant Saviour lay. So the Al-Muharraq Monastery is located, in the land of Egypt’s exact geographical center. According to Matthew’s Gospel a flight of Holy Family into Egypt to seek refuge as an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said,”Rise, take the child and His mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him in Matthew 2:13. On their flight, Holy Family fled by night from Bethlehem and so returned when Joseph told in a dream it was safe to take the Saviour back to the land of His nativity. The Holy Family in Egypt in exile from Palestine lived at Matareya, a few miles northeast of Cairo. A fountain and a Sycamore tree they rested under exists as baby Jesus’ miracle. So they left the desert behind and made their way southwards crossing Nile eastern bank, to Matareyah and Ain Shams or ancient Heliopolis site oldest in history ancient times since Jeremiah 43:13. The district suburb today’s Cairo miles city center.The Holy Family avoid pagan areas and looked for places of Jewish settlements. Historical sources reveal Holy Family’s stay at Matareyah. Apocryphal gospel of Matthew, Coptic and Egyptian synaxar details Holy Family places. Matareyah, tree stands today, visited, called ‘Mary’s Tree’ as Family rested in shade. Infant Jesus caused water to flow from spring. He blessed it, drank from it and Mary washed His clothes, poured the washing water on ground and from spot fragrant balsam blossomed. It is used for healing and pain soothing properties of a balm essence prepared in scents of perfumes of holy Chrism. Southwards crossed Nile eastern bank, Matariya and Ain Shams ancient Heliopolis Cairo 10 km city. At Ain Shams large Jewish community, had temple Synagogue of Unias for worship. The Family rested shade of infant Old Cairo in Zeitoun landmarks of a Coptic heritage marking paths Holy Family. It is area called Old Cairo, Misr el Kadima, locations brief visit by Holy Family. The Governor of Fustat enraged their idols fell at Jesus’ approach sought to kill the Child. Took shelter in the cave Church of Abu Serga St. Sergius built. And they moved south Maadi to Memphis capital of Egypt. Boarded a sailing boat up Nile to southern Egypt. Historic church built on the spot they embarked dedicated to virgin is “Al Adaweya,” Virgin’s Church “of Ferry.” Maadi, Arabic, “the crossing time.” Stone steps lead down to River’s bank used by Holy Family accessible to pilgrims through the Church courtyard.On Friday the 3rd of the Coptic month of Baramhat, 12 of March, 1976, a Bible floated along ripples of Nile to bank by the Church opened to Isaiah 19:25 says: “Blessed be Egypt My People.” The Bible is in glass in Sanctuary of in the Church. Sail-boat docked at village of Ashnein El Nassara or Deir el Garnous Monastery of Arganos 10 km west of Ashnein El Nassara near Maghagha. Western wall of church of Virgin deep well provided Holy Family with water needed. Then to a spot Abai Issous, “the Home of Jesus,” the site of present-day Sandafa village, east of Al Bahnassa 17 km west town Beni Mazar. To Samalout cross the Nile again to east bank of River Monastery of Virgin near Gabal al Tair east Samalout, thousands of birds. Holy Family rested in cave in ancient Church there. Coptics say Holy Family rested in the shade of the Mountain, Jesus stretched His little Hand to hold the rock about to fall from mountain-side imprint of His palm still visible. The Holy Family passed laurel tree south of Gabal El Tair by Nile from Mountain to Nazlet-ebeid Minia Bridge.The recorded events testify of townsfolk infuriated when their stone statue of a local idol cracked and fell. They evicted Holy Family from town. A historically recorded incident dating to that period refers to devastation of Qussqam, and Coptic tradition asserts the ruin befell the town was the consequence of the violent rejection of their gentle visitors. The tree bows to worship Jesus passing Tree branches downwards on ground and upwards covered in green leaves called: “al abed” or “Worshipper.” They pass Beni-Hassan, town Al Ashmounein or Hermopolis Magna. Jesus’ Presence triggered idols to crumble as foretold by the prophets of old. So the townsfolk in consequence, turned angry, aggressive, and the Holy Family turned their backs on town and headed southwards. Their idols fell but blessed Al Ashmounein by Dairout Um Nakhla Jesus’ spring water flows. Sailed across Nile 10 km south to Qussqam or Qost-Qoussia stone statue of idol cracked and fell so evicted Holy Family from town. Qussqam in Coptic tradition ruin consequence of rejection of Holy Family in land to built “Altar to LORD in midst of the land of Egypt.
Continued southwards, the Holy family passed Fortress of Babylon in Old Cairo, and saw pyramids of Giza. According to tradition there used to be a palm tree at Giza under which Blessed Virgin Mary nursed Baby Jesus. This palm tree in the region bearing fruit. Holy Family moved south, reaching Cairo suburb of Maady district Memphis capital of Egypt. Maadi crossing doorway step by Nile as Joseph acquainted with sailors of Nile boats. So Holy Family taken south to Upper Egypt with the historic church built on spot they embarked.dedicated to the Blessed Mother, ‘Al-Adaweya’.Virgin’s Church ‘of the Ferry.’ Maady, derives from Arabic word means ‘the crossing point. There stone steps lead down to the River bank used by Holy Family and the pilgrims through Church courtyard. On Friday 3rd of Coptic month of Baramhat 12 March, 1976, Bible floated on ripples of Nile to bank by Church. This opened Isaiah miracle occurred Friday on Nile to bank below the Church. Was opened to Isaiah 19: 25 says, “Blessed be Egypt My People.” Bible in glass in Sanctuary of the Church for all to see. And at Jesus’ entrance in country, all idols of the land of Egypt fell with a crash, shattered and broken upon their faces. Some received cures of leprosy, demoniac deliverance by His word. Route as travelers of Sinai from Palestine to Egypt cross Nile from infanticide fury of King Herod. The Holy Family avoid public paths of passing to cross Sinai. In Egypt, are chronicled by Theophilus, twenty-third Patriarch of Alexandria in 384 – 412 A.D. He testified on eve of sixth of Hator Coptic month of November details Holy Family’s journey to and from was Egypt recorded.
Apocrypha Infancy Gospel of James says Holy Family fled together with Salome, Mary’s midwife. They made their way through Judaic desert to Jordan valley. Majority of images show their journey travelling in one direction and return to the Holy Family to The Holy Land. Then Holy Family proceeded from Bethlehem to Gaza, to El-Zaraniq Floussiat twenty-eight miles west of al-Arish, near oasis of Ain Hagla to Jordan River. A church honours Holy Family to mark the place where the Holy Family rest. Ain Hagla or Kalamonia means ‘good abode.’ To northern Sinai reached Farma ancient Pelusium mid – way between al-Arish and present-day Port Said. The Greek monk Epiphanius Hagiopolites eighth century and Western monk Bernard the Wise in 870 AD mention in their writing the Holy Family stopped in the city. The church is dedicated to Mary as an angel gave message to Joseph to leave Egypt to ancient city of Hebron one of the oldest cities of the world of Holy site for Jews, Christians and Muslims is the cave of Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebecca, Jacob, Lea’s resting place bought from Ephron, son of Zohar cave of Machpelah owned at the edge of field. Sell at its full price for a burial place in Genesis 23:9. Holy Family continued journey to Ashkelon where Samson slaughtered Philistines by The Spirit of LORD upon him killed thirty men and despoiled and gave their garments to those who answered his riddle in Judges 14:19. On twenty-fourth day of Coptic month of Bashans to first of June, Coptic Church celebrates entry of Lord Jesus Christ to Land of Egypt. On that day churches pray doxology saying “Rejoice, Oh Egypt; O, people of Egypt and all Children of Egypt who live in its borders, rejoice lift up your hearts, for the lover of all mankind, He is before the beginning of ages, has come to you.”
Addeir Al-Moharraq – Al-Qussia – Assiut is the place they stayed in Assuit known as Al-Qussia or Al-Muharraq Monastery later built and still stands today. All the places mentioned are significant in the history of Egypt for centuries. The Pope Francis made Egypt the Roman Catholic pilgrimage route to celebrate Jesus, Son of God. Millions retrace the steps of the Holy Family in Egypt on map including numbers of the thirty places associated with their flight map route in Egypt. In various places Holy Family discovered many springs and wells in the area of the Nile delta and valley. And so many villages mention of a palm tree, which offered shade to the Holy Family and nourished them with its fruit as well. In the years between 7 – 4 BC when Gaius Turranius was governor in Egypt, the Holy Family crossed narrow Isthmus of al Qantara where Abraham in Genesis 12:10 Jacob and sons traveled to Egypt. Since creation, famines people of Israel travelled to Egypt freely or sent into the captivity God allowed to correct them to follow God exclusively. Moses was also in Egypt and as part of Garden of Eden is fertile so popular rulers took it over many times fighting battles of conquest.
The Coptic Synaxar calendar of saints records Tal Basta is seventy-two miles northeast of Cairo Egyptian town visited by Holy Family. Oral traditions say that in Tal-Basta or Basta Jesus made spring well up from ground. and His presence triggered idols to crumble, as foretold by the prophets of old. The townsfolk, in consequence, turned malevolent and aggressive, whereupon the Holy Family turned their backs on the town and headed southwards. Reached Mostorod which later received name Al-Mahmma north west of Cairo. Al-Mahmma means ‘the Bathing place’ a name given to the town because the Virgin Mary bathed yhe Christ Child and washed His clothes there. On their way back into Palestine, the Holy Family stopped once more at Mostorod and caused a spring to gush from earth still flows forth today. There are many walks credited to baby Jesus’ stay in Egypt still in existence today and used by many people for healing and to quench physical and Spiritual thirst. Their flight continued to Belbeis where Mary Tree used by local citizens for the cemetery. The tree was removed in 1850 from the corner of Al-Ansârî Street. The other stories relate to token memorials of Jesus at Meniet Samanoud and Sakha, Burullus. The journey north to Meniet Samanoud is where the local population received them with kindness and good hospitality that earned them a deserved blessing. There is a large granite trough according to local belief used by Mary to knead dough and a water-well Christ Child, Himself, blessed still seen today. A
footprint of Christ child imprinted on a rock is stored to see by many people in the Coptic Church in Egypt. According to Bishop Zacharias of Sakhâ Holy Family travels from Samanoud to Burullus via Sakha that tradition says Jesus left His footprint on rock. So place called Bikha Isus Pekha Issous or Lysous Footprint of Jesus. The rock is preserved hidden for centuries until 1984 in public in Sakha recorded in document of philus’ vision attested by Coptic practice Christians. They journeyed into Wadi el-Natroun and arrive at Wadi El Natroun Natroun Valley after crossing the Rosetta branch of the Nile to western Delta heading to south into Wadi El-Natroun Al Asqeet in the Western Desert of Egypt. In.earliest decades of Christianity, desert expanse to Wadi El-Natroun site of settlements and later many monasteries. And Jesus blessed desert and future settlements so monks occupy the four Wadi ‘n-Natrun monasteries. Continued southwards the Holy family passed Fortress of Babylon in.Old Cairo and saw pyramids of Giza. According to tradition there used to be a palm tree at Giza under which Mary nursed Baby Jesus. This palm tree was tree in the region bears fruit eaten.On arrival at Wadi El-Natroun Natroun Valley after crossing the Rosetta branch of the Nile to the western Delta headed south into Wadi El-Natroun called Al Asqeet in Western Desert of Egypt. And on to Al Bahnassa and Samalout went on from there to spot later named Abai Issous, “the Home of Jesus” the site of present-day Sandafa village, east of Al Bahnassa some thirteen miles west of town of Beni Mazar. The Blessed Mary took her Son and watched over Him for God gave Him wisdom to teach all, this
is still true to believers. They went from Bahnassa to Samalout and crossed Nile again from that town to spot on the east bank of the River where the Monastery of Virgin now stands upon Gabal Al-Tair Bird Mountain east of Samalout, south of Meadeyat Beni Khaled. Holy Family rested in cave located inside the ancient Church. Gabal Al-Tair is called Gabal El-kaf Palm Mountain. Coptic tradition say the Holy Family rested in the shade of the mountain, Jesus stretched His little hand rock to stop from mountain side so His imprint of His palm is still visible.
When they resumed their travels, the Holy Family laurel tree a stone’s throw south of Gabal El-Tair, along pathway flanking the Nile and leading from the mountain to Nazlet-Ebeid and the New Minia Bridge of today. That tree bowed to worship Lord Christ as passing. The tree is unique all branches downwards, trailing on the ground, turn upwards again, covered i cloak of green leaves. They call tree Al-Abed “Worshipper.
Minya – Sondos Ahmed Continuing their journey through Upper Egypt crossing to west side of the river to Assuit, where they stayed for six months. The longest spent in the place during their journey through Egypt is where Joseph had the dream in which an angel told him that Herod the great was dead and was safe to return to Palestine. After spending more than three years in Egypt the Holy Family started the journey back, taking the same route to Palestine. The place they stayed in Assuit is Al-Qussia, where Al-Muharraq Monastery later built and still stands today. Once more by crossing the Nile, back to its west bank, the Holy Family traveled southwards to town of Al-Ashmounein or Harmopolis Magna but did not tarry long there. Left behind fallen idols to Dairout Al-Sharif like Al-Ashmounein Greek named Philes and to Qussqam or Qost-Qoussia. There exists a story of the warm welcome Holy family refugees moved to the next stop at Meir or Meira west of Qoussia. They found a kind hospitality so the town and people were abundantly blessed. Destination in the land of Egypt is a place they built an Altar to the LORD in the land of Egypt in Gabal Mount Qussqam. The Monastery of Al-Moharraq was built around area where Holy Family remained over six months. Their time spent in the cave in the Coptic era the altar of the Church of Mary and the altar stone was the resting place of the Child Jesus during months He dwelt there. Some refer to it as the Second Bethlehem. It is believed is the spot Al-Moharraq Monastery stands and angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, and said “Arise, take the young Child and His mother and go back to the land of Israel for they are dead all who seek the young Child’s life says Matthew 2:20. The church dedicated to Blessed Mary in Dair al-Moharraq was the first church built in Egypt. It is believed that it was built immediately after St. Mark’s arrival in Egypt around 60 AD. Return route deviated from one they came. It took them to city of Assiut and blessed locations commemorate the Christian buildings of mountaintop convent of the Virgin Mary chastity meditating to God.Biblical history says at the end of it all, they arrived home in Joseph’s old house in small town of Nazareth in Galilee. It’s from the land of Jewish Palestine where message of Christ in fullness of time will be heard. Journey from Bethlehem and a return to Nazareth lasted over three years and covering about 1242.80 miles. They travelled on a donkey and sailboat on Nile. These 25-stop-journeys in Egypt churches and monasteries from Gaza to North Sinai through Wadi Al-Arish and Al-Farama Pelusium southeast in a Nile Delta. They stopped at Al-Basta on their way in a place of monastery first home to of worship plus meditating to God. A flight into Egypt Al-Matarya district and Al-Zaytoun stops of Holy Family journey in Toman Bey Street Al-Zaytoun Church some church visitors report sightings of appearing near the church’s domes.
Virgin Mary Church at Zaytoun Moving on to “Old Cairo” (Al-Fustaat), the Holy Family stayed for a short period of time in cave turned later to Abi Serja Church, inside Roman Fortress of Babylon. After they moved on to Al-Maadi district and stayed in location later turned to “Virgin Mary” Church. Sailed a boat south the Nile stream crossing east bank of river. Where Monastery of the Virgin on top of Gabal Al-Kaf is now located. Gabal Al-Kaf translates Mountain of the Palm is where Jesus is left imprint of His palm on the stones of mountain. Continued their journey through the Upper Egypt crossing back to western side of river to Assuit they stayed six months. It was the longest period spent in the same place during the journey through Egypt. And is where Joseph had a dream an angel told him that Herod the great was dead so safe to return to Palestine. After they spent more than three years in Egypt it then Holy Family started their journey back taking same route to Palestine. The place in Assuit is known as Al-Qussia or Al-Muharraq Monastery later built and still stands today. Place stayed in Assuit Al-Qussia Al-Muharraq Monastery was later on built and still stands today.
Addeir Al-Moharraq – Al-Qussia – Assiut As Pope Francis made it Roman Catholic pilgrimage route is expected to promote religious tourism in Egypt. Eight stops of the 25 chosen to form the main stops of these pilgrimage route. The pilgrimages starts in the city of Al-Arish, North Sinai, crosses to Eastern Delta of Nile reaching Wadi Al-Natroun. Number of important Coptic monasteries include the St. Mary Church in Mostorod, Saints Sergius and Bacchus Church and Garnos Monastery. In living history the Bible is confirmed as Joseph was warned in dream. Herod died the family returned from Egypt in 4 BCE. Herod Archelaus succeeded his father in Judea so they went to Galilee. Archelaus was so cruel in response to people’s complaints in 6 AD is deposed by Augustus and banished to Vienne in Gaul. Galilee was ruled by Archelaus brother, Herod Antipas. Matthew 2:23 says the return to Nazareth fulfilled the prophecy, “He shall be called Nazarene” in Isaiah 11:1, “A shoot will come from stump of Jesse from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.” Hebrew word “branch” means nezer and His disciples called the Nezarenes. Acts 24:5 says, What do You want with us Jesus of Nazareth, Master of the disciples. The Church of Nazarene and disciples of Jesus were as originally called the Nezarenes. Jesus calls Himself Nazarene to Paul in Acts 22:8 when he confronted Paul on way to Damascus to persecute the Christians. The journey of Holy Family in Egypt is recorded by the Coptic Church follows exact path taken. Journey starts from Bethlehem to Gaza to El Zaraniq Floussiat 37 km west El Arish. To northern Sinai in Farma or ancient Pelusium mid-way between El Arish and Port-Said. To Tel Basta near Zagazig, in Sharqiah Governorate about 81 km northeast of Cairo, Jesus’ water sprung from ground. Into Mostorod 10 km from Cairo called Al Mahamma, the Bathing place, Mary bathed Christ Child and washed His clothes. On way back to Palestine Holy Family passed Mostorod again and spring gushed from the earth, flowing till present day. Northeastwards to Belbeis (ancient Philippos), back into Sharqiah Governorate, at a distance of about 55 km from Cairo. They rested in shade of tree called, “The Virgin Mary’s Tree.” Holy Family continued journey north and passed by Zagazig. In Meniet Sammanoud Meniet Genah they passed by town Daqadous the church of Mary is found water-well Holy Family drank. Crossed Nile to city Sammanoud in the Delta were received with kindness and hospitality. A large granite trough used for kneading dough and the water-well Christ Child blessed. To north-west, Holy Family traveled Sakha, in lake-district of Burullus, present-day Governorate of Kafr El-Sheikh. Jesus Foot PekhaIssous is Holy Child’s footprint marked in relief rock. The rock is preserved, hidden for centuries unearthed on 27 September 1984. Towns and cities in Governorates of Gharbia, Kafr El –Sheikh traditions say used to the Belqas wastelands. From Sakha, came to Wadi El Natroun (Natroun Valley) after crossing Rosetta branch of Nile to Western Delta, south to Western Wadi El Natroun (Scetis) so crossed the Rosetta branch of the Nile to the Western Delta, and headed south into Wadi El Natroun (Scetis) in Western Desert of Egypt. Passed by the spring of Al Humra, infant Jesus caused a water spring from ground the well called Beer Mariam (Mary’s Well) today. Christian Wadi El Natroun is site of the monastic settlements and commemoration of the Holy Family’s passage in valley. So left desert southwards across Nile, eastern bank to Matariya, Ain Shams ancient Heliopolis in Cairo, 10 km from the city center. At Ain Shams Jewish community, temple Synagogue of Unias for worship. In Matariya tree day called the “Mary’s Tree.” The Family rest in shade and the infant Jesus caused water to flow from spring they drank and blessed. Mary washed His clothes, poured washing water on the ground spot is the fragrant balsam plant blossom. Healing, pain soothing balm is essence used in scents and perfumes of holy Chrism. In Old Cairo, Holy Family rested in Zeitoun, to Cairo landmarks of a Coptic heritage marking paths Holy Family. In called Old Cairo, Misr el Kadima brief visit by Holy Family. Governor of Fustat idols fell at Jesus’ approach sought to kill the Child. Took shelter in the cave Church of Abu Serga St. Sergius. They moved south Maadi, Pharaonic to Memphis capital of Egypt. Boarded a sailing boat Nile to southern Egypt. Historic church built on spot embarked dedicated to “Al Adaweya,” Virgin’s Church “of Ferry” in Maadi, Arabic word “crossing time with stonesteps lead to River’s bank by Holy Family or pilgrims in Church courtyard.On Friday the 3rd of the Coptic month of Baramhat, 12 of March, 1976, a Bible floated along ripples of Nile to bank by the Church opened to Isaiah 19:25 says: “Blessed be Egypt My People.” The Bible is in glass in Sanctuary of in the Church. Sail-boat docked at village of Ashnein El Nassara or Deir el Garnous Monastery of Arganos 10 km west of Ashnein El Nassara near Maghagha. Western wall of church of Virgin deep well provided Holy Family with water needed. Then to a spot Abai Issous, “the Home of Jesus,” the site of present-day Sandafa village, east of Al Bahnassa 17 km west town Beni Mazar. To Samalout, crossed Nile again to spot on east bank of River the Monastery of the Virgin stands Gabal al Tair east Samalout, thousands of birds there. Holy Family rested in cave in an ancient Church there. Coptics say Holy Family rested in shade of the Mountain, Jesus stretched His little Hand to hold rock about to fall from mountain-side on them imprint of His palm still visible. The Holy Family passed the laurel tree south of Gabal El Tair by Nile from the Mountain to Nazlet-ebeid Minia Bridge. The tree bowed to worship Jesus as He was passing Tree branches downwards on the ground and upwards covered in green leaves called: “al abed” or “the Worshipper.” Passed by Beni-Hassan to town of Al Ashmounein or Hermopolis Magna. There idols fell but they blessed Al Ashmounein to Dairout Um Nakhla Jesus spring of water flow. Sailed across Nile 10 km south to Qussqam or Qost-Qoussia infuriated stone statue of idol cracked and fell evicted the Holy Family from town. Qussqam, Coptic tradition asserts ruined as consequence of violent rejection. The Holy Family in the land of Egypt, built “altar to the LORD in midst of the land of Egypt.” The Gabal (mount) Qussqam, named from town laid waste, is 327 km south of Cairo, Governorate of Assiut, Monastery of Al Muharraq west foothills of the Mountain.Built the area where Holy Family stayed six months in a cave Coptic altar Church of Virgin Mary monastery compound. Is altar stone resting place of Child Jesus during months there. Monastery and its surrounding Coptic Christian ethos. It is spot Al Muharraq Monastery an angel of LORD appeared to Joseph in a dream and said: “Arise and take young Child and His mother into the land of Israel; for they are dead which sought young Child’s life, in Mathew 2:20. They return journey on the same route but deviated slightly from first Western Mountain, 8 km southwest of city of Assiut. Location commemorated by Christians building a mountain-top Convent of Mary. In Old Cairo Matariya Mahamma retrace steps journey across Sinai into Palestine. The return journey Jesus to Israel in 4BC as Herod died to Nazareth. The Gospel in Luke 2:22-40 Mary and Joseph took their Infant Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem after forty days of His birth to complete Mary’s ritual purification of childbirth. Perform the redemption of the firstborn son in obedience to the Leviticus 12, the Exodus 13:12–15. Luke says Joseph and Mary provided for poor people instead of lamb sacrifice in Temple. Leviticus 12:8, sacrificing of pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.” In Leviticus 12:1- 4 event takes place forty days after birth for male child. Presentation celebrated forty days after birth of Christ. Jesus in temple encountered Simeon. The Gospel records Simeon promised ” not to see death before sees Lord’s Christ” in Luke 2:26. Simeon prayed, blessed Jesus, told future of Jesus Mary kept in her heart.