His Grace Bishop Suriel will lead the inaugural Pilgrimage to the Heart of the The Holy Land and Egypt in November and December 2016, under the auspices of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of Melbourne.

Parishioners are invited to embrace this unique spiritual immersion in The Holy Land and Egypt which will capture the history and spirituality of many great pillars of the Church: Jesus, St Mary the Mother of God, St Joseph, St Peter, St John the Baptist and St George.

The 14-day Pilgrimage to the Heart of the Holy Land and Egypt is an opportunity to come to know Jesus and his blessed mother Mary more intimately, by following their footsteps which are etched into the desert sands of Bethlehem, Egypt, Nazareth and Jerusalem. Indeed, the visit to Jerusalem includes walking the Stations of the Cross traveled by Christ which is a powerful and tangible way to realise Christ's immense suffering and generous sacrifice made for all humanity.

The Coptic Christian community has received the gift of faith from our ancestors in the Middle East. The flame of our Christian faith has been courageously passed on from one generation to the next. Our spiritual heritage is inextricably linked with Egypt and the East. The lands of the Middle East, steeped in a rich historical and architectural backdrop, continue to nourish our faith and teach us much about Christ and the early Christian Church.

Please note that there are only 45 places available for the pilgrimage, with tour guides fluent in Arabic and English. It is anticipated that places will fill quickly.

All accommodation, dinner and breakfast will be provided in the $5000 cost. The price also includes return airfares from Melbourne to Cairo and return airfares from Cairo to Tel Aviv. There will be an additional $1450 charge applied for a single supplement. Further trip details are included in the itinerary.