Information about Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral, tours, Booking
Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral is a Coptic Orthodox cathedral. The cathedral located in Abbassia district in Cairo, Egypt. Moreover, it is the seat of the Coptic Orthodox Pope. In fact, Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral built during the time when Pope Cyril VI of Alexandria was Pope. Moreover, he was Pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church. Furthermore, Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral inaugurated by Pope Cyril in 1968. In fact, the land where the Cathedral stands was for centuries as a cemetery for the Christians. This land also had the historic Anba Rouis church. However, the land had given to the Coptic Orthodox Church in 969 by Gawhar. It given as a replacement for the land that taken from the church. It taken to include in building the Palace of al-Muizz Li-Deenillah.
In fact, During the twelfth century the area contained ten Coptic Churches. Furthermore, on 18 February 1280 the churches destroyed by the persecutors of the Christians. It was during the rule of Sultan Qalawun. Furthermore, two Churches built in the area under the rule of his son. In addition, in 1943 the govern-orate of Cairo attempted to expropriate the area for public use. This opposed by the General Congregation Council. He led by its secretary at the time Mr. Habib Elmasry their successful campaign. Finally, they proved that Coptic Church maintained control of the land. In fact, it was under the condition that a non-profit building built on it for following fifteen years. Thus, this condition spurred the building of the cathedral.
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Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral is indeed a unique example of architectural evolution. It also includes seven churches. Furthermore, some of them have a great historic value such as Anba Rouis Church. Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral also represents the rapid development of Coptic architecture. Moreover, the famous Coptic civil engineer Michel Bakhoum contributed in its structural design. It has a capacity for 5,000 worshipers. The Roman Catholic pontiff of the time, Pope Paul VI, returned part of St. Mark’s relics. It was before the completion of Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral. They taken from Egypt in the year 828 to Venice, Italy. These relics taken to the constructed Cathedral. They placed in a built shrine decorated with Coptic icons. Moreover, they still remain there today.
In fact, the Coptic Cathedral of St. Mark is by far the largest Cathedral in Africa and the Middle East. The inauguration of the new Cairo Saint Mark Cathedral took place on June 25, 1968. The cathedral was in a ceremony which attended by Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser. It also attended by Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie. Moreover, it also attended by other foreign clergy members from other churches. It was the seat of the Coptic Pope, His Holiness Pope Shenouda III. He was Pope and Patriarch of Alexandria and the Seat of St. Mark.