An Overview of Cairo

Officially known as Al-Qahirah, Cairo means ‘The Triumphant’. The Capital City of Egypt, Cairo is the most populous metropolitan area and the most populous city in Africa situated on the River Nile. In Egyptian Arabic, it is simply called by the name of the country i.e. Misr (Egypt). One of the largest cities in the Middle East today, Cairo is the major commercial, residential, cultural, and educational center of Egypt.

One will be left speechless to see the contrast of the city’s settings, which have vast arid desert on one side, and a busy city, which looks like a modern day oasis on the other. The city leaves travelers from all over the world marveling at its wondrous antiquities beautifully knitted with modern day amenities. Preserving fabulous medieval Islamic culture in its lap, Cairo is also a vibrant modern society at the same time.

Whether it’s dusty streets in chaotic markets, sleek skyscrapers by shiny roads or calm mosques, Cairo has everything a traveler can fantasize for. With the legacy of Byzantium, the wonder of the pyramids, and the mystery of Nile, the city has much to live up to. Besides being a chaotic mixture of sights, sounds and smells, Cairo is also the Egyptian center for expos, trade shows, and conventions (source).

Religion in Cairo

Since antiquity, Egypt has been a center for religious thought. Although it has long since passed into the annals of history, the religion of the Pharaohs was fiercely defended by its priests against outside invaders again and again. In the Christian era, the bishops of Alexandria were constantly on the guard against heresy, and the institution of monasticism owes much to Egyptian contributions. Since Islam arrived in the 7th century C.E., Egypt has been home to many reputed scholars, like the Imam Shaf’i, whose legal rulings are still used to this day. Egypt is also the home to Al Azhar University, one of the oldest and most respected institutions of Islamic education in the entire world.

Most people who live in Cairo are Muslim. There are also many Christians in Egypt, making up perhaps around 10 per cent of the population. The majority of Christians belong to the Coptic Orthodox Church, which was the dominant religion in Egypt before Islam. There are only a handful of Jews left in Cairo – about two hundred. Most of Egypt’s Jewish population has emigrated in the last fifty years to Israel or the United States (source).

Currently, David & Beth Gates are serving as missionaries in Egypt. Would you pray that God would send more laborers to this city and country to lift His name high?

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