The town of Coma, near Herakleopolis, was the birthplace of Saint Anthony the Great (ca. 251). At the age of 18, Anthony became a hermit. He is considered one of the founders of the monasticism in the Christian World. After a life of 105 years, he was buried in the old church of Saint Anthony in the monastery.
The monastery lies near El-Qalzam Mountain, near El-Zaafarana, in the Red Sea Governorate, east of Egypt. It was founded in 356, just after the saint's death; thus, it is the oldest active monastery in the world. It takes its water supply from the desert wells. Exposed to recurrent attacks launched by the Bedouins, the fortified monastery was damaged and restored several times.
Within its compound, the monastery has a mill, a bakery, a library with more than 1500 manuscripts, a nu...Read More