Prior to last week, the most famous Egyptian was King Tut. What is unknown to most Westerners is that Egypt was a Catholic country for 4 1/2 centuries prior to the Council of Chalcedon and the Islamic conquest by Arabian warriors.
One of the sorrows of the Holy Family was the flight into Egypt of the Infant Jesus to escape King Herod. After the crucifixtion, the Christian faith was brought to Egypt by one of the 12 Apostles; St. Mark, author of the First Gospel according to Catholic tradition. There are an astounding 90 Catholic saints that hail from Egypt, according to Dr. Thomas Droleskey of http://www.christorchaos.com. The Rosetta Stone had to revive hieroglyphics in the Eighteenth century because during the Christian epoch, Ra, Osiris and friends were viewed as demons. (Psalms – “The gods of the pagans are devils.”)
The father of monasticism was St. Antony of Egypt. The patron saint of philosophy and the voice that inspired St. Joan of Arc was St. Catherine of Alexandria, Egypt, whose body now rests at the Greek Orthodox monastery on top of Mt. Sinai. St. Cyril of Alexandria defended the Catholic title of the Virgin Mary as “Mother of God” against the Nestorians.
Perhaps most relevant to the modern age was the voice of St. Athanasius of Alexandria, who is little known in the Western church.When there was an North African deacon named Arius whose denied the full divinity of Jesus, whose followers took over the churches in Egypt, St. Athanasius retorted ” They can have the buildings, we have the faith.” A comment that has full resonance in the aftermath of the destruction wrought by Vatican II.
When Mubarak’s regime tried to force the Coptic Oriental Orthodox Church to recognize civil divorce, Pope Shenouda III resisted in the manner of St Athanasius, a sharp contrast to the scandalous Vatican II AmChurch annulment factory, which hands out annulments like lottery tickets or bingo boards.
See video of “Christ is Risen at a mall in Beirut on youtube.”