Forbidden Trip to the Holy Land?

I'm not 100% up to date with the current policy so I'm hoping someone out there knows the rules. Are we still not allowed to travel to Israel due to the political situation? If so, does that also include the Holy Land? And if that's so, what about the Coptic altar we have in the Holy Sepulchre? I've heard from some that only Egyptian nationals are banned but we as Americans/Canadians/whatever can travel there. I've heard from others that all Copts are forbidden. Can anyone shed some light on this?


  • On a personal basis, and within the context of citizenship of the lands of the diaspora, You can go to Israel, you can go to the Holy Shrines, but you are not allowed to participate in the Sacraments within the jurisdiction of the Coptic Orthodox Church.  His Holiness placed a mandate that even travelling to these places is forbidden to us as Coptics--which is a separate issue from any other travel non-restrictions on a governmental basis.

    There are a whole bunch of threads on this issue.  Do a search on this site and read up.  Nothing has changed, and will not change for the forseeable future.
  • I've looked up the other threads but there just doesn't seem to be a solid answer. Some say we can go if we keep it hush hush, some say only non-Egyptians can, and some say no at all costs. Nevertheless, if I can ask one question though, what is the point of having a shrine and altar in the Holy Sepulchre if we as Copts cannot even partake of the sacraments there? Does the monk stationed there just pray by himself?
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