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Religion in Modern Egypt

 Religion in Egypt permeates many aspects of social life and is endorsed by law. Egypt is predominantly Muslim, with Muslims comprising about 85-90% of the population. Almost the entirety of Egypt's Muslims are Sunnis. Most of the non-Muslims in Egypt are Christians, the majority of whom belong to the native Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria. While the Egyptian government insists that members of the Coptic Orthodox Church make up only 6% of the population, Coptic sources put forward figures ranging from 14-20%. But nonetheless historically significant, non-immigrant Bahá'í population, and an even smaller community of Jews. The non-Sunni, non-Coptic communities range in size from several thousand to hundreds of thousands. The original Ancient Egyptian religion has all but disappeared.
The Adhan (Islamic call to prayer) that is heard five times a day has the informal effect of regulating the pace of everything from business to entertainment. Cairo is famous for its numerous mosque minarets and church towers. This religious landscape has been marred by a history of religious extremism, recently witnessing a 2006 judgement of Egypt's Supreme Administrative Court, which made a clear legal distinction between "recognized religions" (i.e., Islam, Christianity, and Judaism) and all other religious beliefs.

Islam :
The vast majority of Egyptian Muslims are Sunni, with a small Shi'ite community making up the remainder. A significant number of Sunni Egyptians also follow native Sufi orders. Egypt hosts the most important Sunni institution in the world, Al-Azhar University. It is the oldest Islamic institution of higher studies (founded around 970 C.E.), and is considered by many to be the oldest extant university in the world.
According to the constitution of Egypt, any new legislation must at least implicitly agree with Islamic law. The mainstream Hanafi school of Sunni Islam is largely controlled by the state, through Wizaret Al-Awkaf (Ministry of Religious Affairs). Al-Awkaf controls all mosques and supervises Muslim clerics. Imams are trained in Imam vocational schools and at Al-Azhar. The ministry supports Sunni Islam and has commissions authorized to give Fatwā judgements on Islamic issues.

Christianity :
Christian More than 95% of Egypt's Christians are members of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, an Oriental Orthodox Church, established in the 1st century C.E. by Saint Mark.

* Significant minorities within Egypt's Christian community include the following denominations :

1-The Coptic Evangelical Church (a Protestant Church) has between 750,000 and 800,000 members in Egypt.
2-The Coptic Catholic Church (an Eastern Catholic Church) has about 700,000 members in Egypt and roughly 50,000 adherents abroad.
3- The Greek Orthodox Church of Alexandria (an Eastern Orthodox Church) has between 250,000 and 300,000 adherents in Egypt, out of whom approximately 45,000 are of Greek (Hellenic) descent.
4-The Melkite Greek Catholic Church (an Eastern Catholic Church) has about 125,000 members in Egypt.
5- The Armenian Apostolic Church (an Oriental Orthodox Church) has between 45,000 and 50,000 adherents in Egypt.
6- The Roman Catholic Church has between 15,000 and 18,000 adherents in Egypt.
7- The Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East (a Protestant Church known in Egypt as the Anglican Church) has between 10,000 and 15,000 members in Egypt.
8-The Maronite Church (an Eastern Catholic Church) has between 9,000 and 11,000 adherents in Egypt.

Judaism  :
Egypt was once home to one of the oldest Jewish communities in the world. Egyptian Jews, who were mostly Karaites, participated in all aspects of Egypt's social, For a while, Jews from across the Ottoman Empire and Europe were attracted to Egypt in the 19th and early 20th centuries. After the 1956 Suez Crisis, a great number of Jews were expelled by Gamal Abdel Nasser. A steady stream of emigration of Egyptian Jews followed, reaching a peak after the Six-Day War with Israel in 1967. Today, Jews in Egypt number fewer than 200.