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Ancient Egypt was one of the world's great civilizations. Dynasties of pharaohs ruled Egypt from 3200 B.C. to 341 B.C. Egypt fell to the Persian Arab Muslim conquest in 640 A.D. Arabs, who introduced Islam and the Arabic language to Egypt in the seventh century, ruled for the next six centuries. Ottoman Turks conquered the country in 1517.
After the completion of the Suez Canal in 1869, Egypt became an important transportation hub, but fell heavily into debt. To protect its investments, Britain seized control of Egypt from 1882 until 1914. They granted full sovereignty to Egypt after World War II.
Egypt is the most rapidly growing country in the Arab world. With limited arable land and overtaxed resources, Egyptian society is stressed. For that reason, there is an Egyptian diaspora that has migrated to other parts of the world. Migration from Egypt mainly started in the 1970s and 1980s. Before that, the few who migrated were from well-educated communities. After that time, poor Egyptians have moved to the West (Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand) as workers. Those who have migrated to Arabic-speaking countries like Algeria have done so intending to return to Egypt.
In times of unrest and economic hardship in Egypt, workers migrate in search of a better future despite considerable risks; they often work on building sites, and in factories, restaurants and shops. They sometimes face abuse and deportation. Some Egyptians who earn low wages in Arabic-speaking countries face resentment because of their nationality. Arabs fear "Egyptianization" since Egypt dominates the media, language and culture of the Arabic speaking world.
Islam became the state religion of Egypt in 1980. The majority of Egyptian Arabs are either Shafi, Maliki or Hanafi Sunni Muslim. Most Egyptians in Algeria are Sunni Muslims like the majority population in Algeria, but there is also a Coptic Christian minority.
Copts brought Christianity to Egypt very early, where it remained for 1,000 years as the primary religion. Even today, the great majority of the Christian population are still members of the Coptic Church. Evangelical Christians are a small percentage of Egyptians in both Egypt and Algeria.
Many have experienced poverty in Egypt, which has prompted migration, and placed them at greater risk of exploitation.
Those who follow Christ must have love and boldness to be a witness to Egyptians and Algerians. With a growing missionary vision, the Egyptian Church has the potential to reach out to Muslims other countries for Christ. The Church is limited by lack of training opportunities, experience and funds. If additional resources are provided, church planters are willing to go.
Pray that Egyptian Christ followers would become a mighty missionary movement for the Lord in Algeria.
Pray for Egyptian Arabs to have spiritual hunger and a discernment that will lead them to the cross and the empty grave.
Pray for Egyptian Arab Christians to put their faith in the Risen Christ rather any religious institution.
Pray that Egyptians in Algeria will soon be able to provide for themselves and their families.