On the fifth anniversary of ISIS’ killings of 21 Christians, a new museum opened in Egypt to honor the Coptic men who were martyred in 2015 in a video that shocked the world.
Bishop Bevnotious of Egypt’s Minya Governorate inaugurated the museum on Feb. 15, the feast day of the 21 Coptic martyrs. The museum is set in the Church of the Martyrs of the Faith and Homeland, which was opened exactly two years prior and is named to honor the victims, the Cairo Scene reports. (RELATED: Islamic Militants Attack Bus Of Coptic Christians In Egypt, Killing Seven)
The Coptic men were beheaded by ISIS in 2015. The video of the mass killing circulated around the world and became a tragic representation of modern day martyrdom for people internationally who had never seen footage of the persecution of many Christian communities, including the Copts, Egypt’s largest religious minority population.
A large population of Egypt’s Christians live in Minya, and the Egyptian martyrs had also been residents. The church was fully funded by the Egyptian government and was built in the martyrs’ village, according to Cairo Scene.
A 13 foot statue of Jesus Christ was also unveiled and dedicated to the martyrs. The statue is of Christ opening his arms to the statues of the 21 martyrs kneeling before him.
The museum will also include a documentary panorama that depicts the details of the kidnapping and beheadings of the 21 men. There will also be a shrine with their remains, as well as the coffins their bodies were carried in from Libya, per the Cario Scene.
Copts continue to face persecution today, often at all levels of society, and continue to be targets of jihadist groups like ISIS.
We strongly condemn ISIS’s attack on Coptic Christian worshippers en route to a monastery in #Egypt. We abhor these cowardly assaults on the most basic freedoms of the Egyptian people and stand with the Copts. Our deepest condolences are with the victims & their families. https://t.co/02vEBQw1ws
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) November 3, 2018