"In that day, Egypt provided peace for a fleeing Mary, Joseph and Jesus.
Today... Mary returns to Egypt to provide Peace and Hope to her Egyptian children and the whole Middle East"
OUR LADY OF ZEITOUN, EGYPT
THE POSITION OF THE CHURCH - APPROVED
The Official Statement from the Papal Residence in
Cairo on the Apparition of Saint Mary in the Zeitoun Virgin Mary
Coptic Orthodox Church in Cairo, Egypt
Since the evening of Tuesday April 2, 1968 (the 24th of Bramhat,
1684 A.M.), the apparitions of the Holy Virgin Saint Mary, Mother of
Light, have continued in the Coptic Orthodox Church named after Her
in Zeitoun, Cairo.
The apparitions occurred on many different nights and are continuing
in different forms. The Holy Virgin Saint Mary appeared sometimes in
full form and sometimes in a bust, surrounded with a halo of shining
light. She was seen at times on the openings of the domes on the
roof of the church, and at other times outside the domes, moving and
walking on the roof of the church and over the domes. When She knelt
in reverence in front of the cross, the cross shone with bright
light. Waving Her blessed hands and nodding Her holy head, She
blessed the people who gathered to observe the miracle. She appeared
sometimes in the form of a body like a very bright cloud, and
sometimes as a figure of light preceded with heavenly bodies shaped
like doves moving at high speeds. The apparitions continued for long
periods, up to 2 hours and 15 minutes as in the dawn of Tuesday
April 30, 1968 (the 22nd of Barmouda, 1684 A.M.), when She appeared
continuously from 2:45 am till 5:00 am.
Thousands of people from different denominations and religions,
Egyptians and foreign visitors, clergy and scientists, from
different classes and professions, all observed the apparitions. The
description of each apparition as of the time, location and
configuration was identically witnessed by all people, which makes
this apparition unique and sublime.
Two important aspects accompanied these apparitions: The first is an
incredible revival of the faith in God, the other world and the
saints, leading to repentance and conversion of many who strayed
away from the faith. The second are the numerous miracles of healing
which were verified by many physicians to be miraculous in nature.
The Papal Residence has thoroughly investigated the apparitions and
gathered information by way of committees of clergy who have also
witnessed the apparitions by themselves and recorded everything in
reports presented to His Holiness Pope Kyrillos VI.
By issuing this statement, the Papal Residence declares, with full
faith and great joy and humility of a thankful heart, that the Holy
Virgin Mary, Mother of Light, appeared in clear forms on many
different nights, for periods of variable length, lasting on
occasions more than 2 continuous hours, starting on the eve of
Tuesday April 2, 1968 (the 24th of Bramhat, 1684 A.M.) and up till
now (the date of the report) in the Coptic Orthodox Church named
after Her in Zeitoun, Cairo. It is historically proven that the
location of this church in Tumanbay street, in Zeitoun quarter, on
the way to El-Matarya, Cairo, is on the path taken by the Holy
Family when visiting Egypt.
May God make this miracle a symbol of peace for the world, and a
blessing for our nation as it has been prophesized: "Blessed be
Egypt My people."
Saturday May 4, 1968 Barmouda 26, 1684 A.M.
Papal Residence in Cairo
Background: For more than a year, starting on the eve of Tuesday, April 2, 1968, the Blessed
Holy Virgin Saint Mary, Mother of God, appeared in different forms over the
domes of the Coptic Orthodox Church named after Her at Zeitoun, Cairo, Egypt.
The late Rev. Father Constantine Moussa was the church priest at the time of
these apparitions. The apparitions lasted from only a few minutes up to several
hours and were sometimes accompanied by luminous heavenly bodies shaped like
doves and moving at high speeds. The apparitions were seen by millions of
Egyptians and foreigners. Among the witnesses were Orthodox, Catholics,
Protestants, Moslems, Jews and non-religious people from all walks of life. The
sick were cured and blind persons received their sight, but most importantly
large numbers of unbelievers were converted...
His Holiness Pope Kyrillos VI (Cyril VI) entrusted a committee
of high rank priests and bishops to investigate the apparitions, and on
Saturday, May 4, 1968, the Coptic Orthodox Church officially confirmed the
apparitions after thorough investigation (see official report below). His
Holiness Pope Kyrillos VI also assigned the responsibility of documenting the
apparitions and accompanying miracles to a special committee headed by Anba
Gregorios, bishop of postgraduate studies, Coptic culture and scientific
The apparitions were also approved by the local Catholic
Patriarch, Cardinal Stephanos I (Stephen I), who stated that the apparitions of
our Lady at Zeitoun were beyond any doubt and were seen by many of his
trustworthy Coptic Catholic children. Father Dr. Henry Ayrout, the rector of the
Catholic Collège de la Sainte Famille (Jesuit order) in Cairo also declared his
acceptance of the miraculous apparitions of Virgin Mary, saying that whether
Catholic or Orthodox, we are all Her children and She loves us all equally and
Her apparitions at the Zeitoun Coptic Orthodox Church confirmed this notion.
Rev. Dr. Ibrahim Said, head of all Protestant Evangelical Ministries in Egypt at
the time of the apparitions, affirmed that the apparitions were true. Catholic
nuns from the Sacré-Coeur order also witnessed the apparitions and sent a
detailed report to the Vatican. On the evening of Sunday, April 28, 1968, an
envoy from the Vatican arrived, saw the apparitions and sent a report to His
Holiness Pope Paul VI of Rome.
Visits Continue even today... These continuing appearances have an interesting link: They have all occurred on
holy ground: traditional places where the Holy Family stopped along their flight
from Herod. At each of these sites, they were welcomed or turned away, and idols
fell, the desert bloomed, miracles occurred. Their first stop in Egypt was at
Zeitoun and their last, Assuit. As they turned back to retrace their Nile
journey, Joseph received his dream to return to Nazareth--at Gabal Dranka.
So, it would seem, Mary has been retracing all the steps of the journey when
Her Son first came to His people. Sometimes, along with doves and angels,
meteors and strange lights, She has been seen in the company of Her beloved
Joseph, Her Sacred Child, and even a lowly little burro. She began at the
beginning and is now at the end of the Flight into Egypt where the little Family
The Coptic Catholic Church, which has built churches or monateries on each of
these holy sites, has approved as authentic all these separate visitations of
Our Lady. A fact hard to deny as more and more the clergy themselves have seen
Mary and participated in the conversions and miracles.
THE HOLY FAMILY'S JOURNEY TO EGYPT
On the 1st June (24th Bashans) the Church celebrates the anniversary of the Holy
Family's coming to Egypt. It is known that the Holy Family arrived at El Ferma
at the north eastern border of Egypt (now the place is named Port Fouad). Then
the Holy Family moved on to Tal Basta (the city of Zagazig is located there
now)--and arrived there on 24th Bashans. Thus God has blessed our land and all
the old Egyptian idols fell to pieces to realize the Book's statement that: "In that day, shall there be an altar to the Lord in the midst of the land of
Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to the Lord" (Isaiah 19:19).
The Virgin sat in the shade of a big tree. Joseph touched the ground with a rod
of iron, and fresh water sprang out of the spot. It is said that a man named
Kalloum wondered at what he saw. He invited the Holy Family to his house where
he used to pray to an idol. That idol fell and was broken into pieces. So, the
priests demanded the death of Jesus.
The Holy Family went over to Belbeis and then to Menyat Genah (near the present
town of Sammanoud). There, Christ caused a spring of water to appear. A church
was built there. It was called Beekha Isous, i.e. Christ's heel; now it is known
as the Monastery of El Maghtas.
The Holy Family then went over to El Natroun Valley. So, God blessed the place
and filled it with monasteries and peopled them with monks. There, it is said,
the Holy Family was met by two thieves. The first was deeply affected by the
light and holiness emanating from the baby Christ's face. So he persuaded his
companion to restore what they had plundered. The Virgin prayed that he might be
granted the blessing of repentance. It is the same thief, on Christ's right,
that had been touched by Grace, so he cried out on the throne, "Lord, remember
me when thou comest into thy kingdom."
The Holy Family then moved on to Ein Shams and El Matterya. Joseph had a stick.
Christ planted it. A spring of water came out, and it grew into a tree. El
Matterya tree still lives up to the present day, over 2000 years.
The Holy Family passed by the site occupied now by the Church of Abou Serga in
Then the Holy Family moved on to Upper Egypt (near Samalout) passing through El
Ashmouneen, and Mount Kiskam and Meir and Mount Drinka (in Assyout). El Moharik
Monastery there has an ancient church on the site of the cave in which the Holy