NJ.com: Largest Coptic Church in USA to Expand
The first Coptic Orthodox parish to be founded in the United States proves that it is continuing to grow and thrive.
$3.2 million community center being built by The Coptic Orthodox Church of St. Mark in Jersey City
by Michaelangelo Conte/The Jersey Journal
The Coptic Orthodox Church of St. Mark in Jersey City was the first Coptic church in the United States, according to Wikipedia, and the parish of more than 650 families continues to grow with the ongoing construction of a $3.2 million community center.
“With God’s grace, the construction of St. Mark Community Center is the beginning of a new chapter in the history of St. Mark Church in Jersey City,” said the Rev. Abraam Sleman,St. Mark’s pastor, whose congregation is located in a city which is home to the largest Coptic population in the United States.
The three-story community center, which will have a full-size basketball court on the top floor, will be open to the community to participate in church planned activities and events such as Sunday school after liturgies, Bible study after vespers on Saturday evenings and periodic activities and services which will be announced on the church website at www.saintmark.com.
English as a second language classes for Arabic speakers from Egypt will also be taught at the center located, at West Side and Ege avenues. It will also feature classrooms for instructional enrichment, conference rooms, and a multipurpose room for large gatherings. Construction of the community center is aimed at providing a facility to enhance both spiritual and social growth, church officials said.
The church purchased several buildings at the community center’s site between 1970 and 2004. On June 8, a groundbreaking ceremony was held and a ribbon cutting was performed by Papal Vicar the Rev. Saraphim El-Soryani, the North American representative of His Holiness Pope Tawadros II, the 118th and current Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark.
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