Church of Martyrs
For almost 2000 years Christians in Egypt were constantly being tortured, martyred and oppressed by rulers who were infuriated by their refusal to worship their gods and idols. In the west the dates start from the birth of Christ “Anno Domino”, however, the Coptic Calendar starts from 284A.D. when Emperor Diocletian killed masses of Christians and is termed “Anno Martyrum” (the years of the martyrs). Persecution has been intertwined in the church’s history and has continued even to this day. The Martyrs of the church are commemorated in a “Synaxarium”, which is one of the readings in the Divine Liturgy.