Among the nations of the world, Jesus chose Egypt to escape from the face of King Herod, who wanted to kill him when he was young. The Gospel of Matthew mentions in the second chapter that King Herod tried to kill the baby Jesus. So the angel of the Lord commanded St. Joseph “Take the child and his mother and flee to Egypt and stay there until I take you.” When Herod died St. Joseph was ordered to bring his family back to the historic land of Israel.
place of pilgrimage
Tradition has it that the Holy Family entered Egypt through the northeastern frontier. Travel southwest to the Nile Delta. and from present-day Cairo took a boat along the Nile to present-day Assiut. It was 375km south of Cairo. They stayed there mostly to camp in Egypt until returning home by a slightly different return route.
The entire journey took about three and a half years, spanned more than 3,500 km and included 31 sites, eight caves or caves. 18 springs or wells and 13 trees. Today, at every point where the Holy Family traveled, there was a church, monastery or convent that was a pilgrimage destination for not only Egyptian Copts but sometimes Muslims too.
The beginning of the second millennium led the Egyptian government to recognize the Holy Family Trails in Egypt as a potential destination for religious tourism. A project was then undertaken to upgrade the area on the route to accommodate pilgrims and tourists. The project, however, stalled for nearly two decades that saw unrest and the aftermath of the so-called Arab Spring. There is a pandemic of COVID-19. But it’s gotten better in recent years.
There are no changes within the church or ancient traces. In addition to the delicate restoration But the road leading to the church was paved and lined with trees or palm trees. Road signs are installed. built car park and in general Accommodation and visitor centers are left to the local community to provide. Hoping that tourism activities are expected to bring prosperity, the ministry has so far developed five tourist sites on the Holy Family route: at Samannoud, Sakha, Tell Basta, Wadi al- Natroun and Gabal al-Teir.
The latest attempt to promote the Holy Family Trail is an amazing virtual reality website launched on November 20 by Pope Tawadros II.
can be viewed at https://map.blessedegypt.com/ar/map This site shows a map of active Egypt, including the sites through which the Holy Family traveled. Clicking on each site on the map takes the visitor on a virtual journey with detailed descriptions of its features. There’s video footage of every site as well as an amazing collection of photos with descriptions in seven languages: Arabic, English, French, Italian, German, Spanish and Russian.
The site was established by the Egyptian NGO Blessed Egypt Foundation for Development and Heritage Revival, which aims to support the Holy Family revival program in Egypt.
Pope Tawadros expressed his admiration for the Blessed Egypt website and praised the use of modern technology to serve the purpose of highlighting the Holy Family travels in Egypt. He said the technology is especially interesting to young people. and will serve to educate them about the inheritance of Egypt. which in this case relates to the important spiritual and historical events of the Holy Family’s flight to Egypt. He admired the meticulousness and precision of detail referring to seven languages.
The Pope says the Holy Family’s path in Egypt offers unique spiritual blessings. and special experiences at the level of tourism History, national and economic
develop local communities
Accompanied by Pope Tavadros during the inauguration ceremony were the people in charge of Blessed Egypt, along with those working on the development of the website.
Nasser Sobhy, Egypt’s blessed head of trustees, a journalist at Watani and a gifted photographer. Referring to the organization’s goals, it focuses on two areas. First, Sobhy said the NGO aims to support government and Church projects in revitalizing the Holy Family’s footsteps in Egypt. Available through the newly launched, comprehensive and engaging seven-language VR site.
Second, he explains that Blessed Egypt aims to contribute to local community development efforts along the Holy Family journey in Egypt. He said this would be accomplished by establishing local community centers where citizens could learn or train to improve their skills in heritage craftsmanship, thereby expanding their opportunities for earning. get better He said these community centers will serve to promote awareness of the economic benefits of tourism to local communities. and reduce the need for young people to immigrate to other countries.
“It is no secret that the Holy Family’s voyage to Egypt was unique in that Egypt was the only place they visited outside the historic lands of Israel. southern suet To attract millions of tourists because it has all the elements of meaningful religious tourism, Pope Tawadros said he was especially happy with Blessed Egypt’s local development goals, saying it would make the community the guardian of that rich heritage. Sobhy said.
“Egyptians, Muslims and Christians have great faith in the blessings Egypt receives from the visit of the Holy Family to their land,” the pope said, in turn adding.
dream come true
On her Facebook page, Dina Sidhom, managing editor of Watani’s website Wataninet, writes of a difficult journey that began within the walls of Watani in the early 2000s and reached its final stage with the launch of the website. She recalled years of gathering accurate information on all the locations of the Holy Family’s journey in Egypt as Sobhy visited them one by one. Take amazing photos and video footage.
Then came the quest for funding for the project. This was severely hampered by the onset of the Arab Spring and the difficult economic situation followed by the year of COVID. It was then that Sobhy decided that the project should take a different form in order to be successful. He spearheaded the founding of Blessed Egypt and offered a VR website.
“With divine blessings and enthusiastic support from faithful friends who believed in the project. and with the vigorous encouragement of our beloved Pope Finally the dream came true.”
Visit an active map of Egypt that includes the sites the Holy Family traveled through at https://map.blessedegypt.com/ar/map