Deir El-Malak Ghabrial (Monastery of the Archangel Gabriel) in the Fayoum Egypt

Deir El-Malak Ghobrial (Monastery of the Archangel Gabriel)

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Our Feature Story on Deir El-Malak

Simply put, there are various stories about the formation of this Monastery, but the following is from the Coptic Church:

At the end of the 5th century in Persia, there was a magician who was called Ibrashet. He secretly married the daughter of the King without him knowing. The Princess then became pregnant and gave birth to a child called Oor who was raised secretly. When Oor was 3 years of age, his mother the Princess died. After the child became 8 years of age, the King found out about him and the marriage. He immediately ordered Oor and his father to be called, but they fled away to Jerusalem, and then to Egypt where they settled in the Naklun Desert next to Fayoum. Six months later, the magician and his sons died without becoming Christians, but Oor remained alive and he learned the way to God. One day, the Holy Mother of God Saint Mary along with the Archangels Michael and Gabriel appeared to him and asked him to build a church in that place in honor of Archangel Gabriel.

In the same days, Oor's grandfather the King died and his son succeeded him. The Queen desired to see Oor very much and her son knew it. He sent many delegates to Oor to go and fetch him. When they found him, he had not yet completed the church and was forced to go back to see his grandmother. He arrived in her land with a great celebration; however, he wanted to go back to Egypt and finish the church, but the king prevented him. The two great Archangels Michael and Gabriel appeared to the King and ordered him to let Oor go. Oor was permitted to go, but he was given many gifts and money to build the church. The devil, seeing Oor going to build the church, attempted to stop him at every turn. He came to Oor asking him to be a monk and thus help him build the church, but all it did was waste material, water, and pottery. The devil even resorted to throwing stones on the heads of the laborers building the church... and he killed many of them with the others running away. Oor was left alone to pray to God. God saw his love and sent the Archangel Gabriel who warned Oor about the devil's tricks. From then on, Oor was very careful and finally completed the church. Anba Isaac, the Bishop of Fayoum at that time came and consecrated the church with the Holy Myron. He also ordained Oor a priest and asked the congregation to make Oor the bishop when he died. When Anba Isaac died, Oor succeeded him as Bishop of Fayoum and looked after his people with love and decency until he passed away in peace. May his blessings be with us all, Amen.

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