Summary Word File - Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern

The Coptic Orthodox History
Timeline of Events:
29 AD: Pentecost.
49 AD: Council at Jerusalem (Acts 15)- Dispute about the circumcision of the gentiles is
resolved. St. James presides as bishop.
61 AD: St. Mark arrival in Egypt and the beginning of Christianity when Anianus the
cobbler believed in Christ.
68 AD: The martyrdom of St. Mark in Egypt.
70 AD: The destruction of Jerusalem and its temple by the Roman emperor Titus, after 4
years of Jewish rebellion against the Roman Empire. Today, only the Western Wall of the
temple remains.
100 AD: The apostolic age and the first period of the Christian church ends.
249 AD: The beginning of vicious persecution against the Christians at the time of
Yet, by the end of the second century, Christianity has spread across much of the Roman
300 AD: The great persecution during Diocletian and Galerius era. Several Christian
communities and villages were wiped out in Africa, Egypt and Palestine.
313 AD: Constantine the Great issued the ―Edict of Milan‖ granting freedom of worship
all religions and the first church was built.
251-356 AD: St. Anthony started monasticism in Egypt, which subsequently spread, to
whole world.
590 AD: in the East, Muslims pushed westward, ending Christian dominance in North
Africa and Palestine the birthplace of Christianity.
1517AD: Martin Luther starting the Protestant reformation
The Coptic Orthodox Church is the oldest church in Christianity. It is the “church of
martyrs” and is based on the teachings on St. Mark the apostle. The Coptic Church recognizes
three councils: the Nicene I, Constantinople I, and Ephesus. These councils outlined our basic
beliefs. The Coptic Church is also known as a non-Chalcedonian church because it rejects the
theology espoused by the Council of Chalcedon that the one nature of Christ is one of two that
are blended together.
The majority of Christians in Egypt and the Middle East are Coptic Orthodox and Egypt
itself has a very special role in the bible. Egypt is where baby Jesus fled to with His mother, St.
Mary. It is where Joseph built warehouses and fulfilled the needs of Egyptians during the famine
and where Jesus Christ built a holy altar and made a unique church.
The Coptic Orthodox Church is known not only as a refuge for the Lord Jesus Christ, but
also as an apostolic church established by St. Mark the apostle. The Coptic Church rejects
criticism of the bible and has followed the traditions it has established since antiquity. It created
the first Christian school in the world, the School of Alexandria. The Coptic Church is not only a
courageous church but also an ascetic church. It has monasteries all over Egypt and several in the
United State. It has offered martyrdom to countless saints, making it a church of saints. The
Coptic Orthodox church is the mother church from which all other churches branch off and has
remained true to the creed it created since the beginning.
The Coptic Church is a rejoicing church and a church with a straight faith. The scriptures
and beliefs of the church are not open to discussion and followers of Coptic Orthodoxy are
devout adherents to the Holy Trinity and to the doctrines of the church. Yet, the church
celebrates its feasts with great joy. There are several fasts that take place throughout the year and
which end with the strengthening of the church through the support of its dedicated members.