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Monastery of Anba Bishoy

Location: It is situated in the eastern side of wadi El-Natron , about 6.2 miles from the highway.

Who built it? It was founded by Al Anba Bishoy who was born in the Egyptian Nile Delta in 320 AD.

Why was it built? It was dedicated to Anba Bishoy who saw our Lord Jesus Christ and whose incorrupt body is preserved to this day.


The Monastery consists of five churches but the main church is called St. Bishoy which have sanctuaries. Now, this church is used only in the summer. Another church, the Church of the Virgin, is to the southeast and is used in the winter. To the south is the Church of St. Iskhirun, and there is also a Church of St. George that is not used at all. There is a palace which is accessed by a drawbridge at its first level and has a Church of the Angel Michael on the second level.

The defensive towers is the largest and strongest of the valley which date to the fifth century. This was a time when the Berbers often attacked monasteries in the area. The monastery has a well with 40 feet depth. It is said that the Berbers washed the blood from their swords after having killed the 49 Martyrs from the monasteries of Sheheit. Monks at the monastery also say that a lot of the Martyers were thrown in this well.

This monastery became a major project for his Holiness Pope Shenouda the Third, after becoming Patriarch of the See of St. Mark on November 14, 1971, like the restorations of The current castle is four stories, with a tower and water tank. Also many buildings were constructed outside the ancient monastery.

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