[map of Egypt] Independent state of northeastern Africa. According to tradition Saint Mark the Evangelist introduced the Catholic Faith into Alexandria which became the center of Christianity in Egypt. Until the Second Æcumenical Council (381) the Patriarch of Alexandria was recognized as next in rank to the Bishop of Rome, and the patriarchate reached its most flourishing period under Saint Athanasius (died 373), champion of the Faith against Arianism, and Saint Cyril (412-444), defender of the Divinity of Christ. In the 5th century the patriarchate fell prey to the Monophysite heresy, and the Catholic succession was twice interrupted for long periods. The Saracen invasions wrought disaster for both uniats and schismatics, and both Churches further declined in the persecutions of the 14th century. Organization of the Uniat Coptic Church dates from 1721 when Benedict XIV gave to Amba Athanasius, Coptic Bishop of Jerusalem, jurisdiction over all Catholics of the Coptic Rite in Egypt and elsewhere, and in 1895 Leo XIII restored the Patriarchate of Alexandria.

Vicariates Apostolic include: Coptic ecclesiastical divisions include: Other ecclesiastical divisions include: See also:
New Catholic Dictionary

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