The highest representative of the Coptic Orthodox Church in Germany is His Excellency Bishop Anba Damian, who has also been in charge of the Coptic parishes in the diocese of northern Germany as diocesan bishop since 2013. The southern German parishes are under the care of His Excellency Bishop Anba Michael. There are two Coptic monasteries in Germany that also serve as episcopal sees: The Monastery of St. Mary the Virgin and St. Maurice in Höxter-Brenkhausen (North Rhine-Westphalia) and the St. Anthony Monastery in Kröffelbach (Hessen). Coptic communities are located in Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, Hanover, Berlin, Hamburg, Heidelberg, Trier, Minden, Bad Grund, Dresden, Bonn, Bremen, Bielefeld, Wismar, Dortmund, Duisburg, Leipzig and Wilhelmshaven. In the last years – also caused by the emigration wave of the Egyptian Copts after the acts of terror of the Muslim Brotherhood – numerous new communities were created. There are now about 20,000 Copts living in Germany.
Monastery of The Holy Virgin Mary the and the Holy St. Maurice in Höxter-Brenkhausen
The monastery in Brenkhausen was in a deplorable condition until 1993. At that time it was purchased as a ruin by the Coptic Church for the symbolic price of one German mark and since then it has been lovingly and expertly restored and renovated under the direction of H.E. Bishop Anba Damian, by Egyptian employees and German companies according to the standards of the monument authority. The work is almost completed and the newly blossomed monastery building has become a popular destination for tour groups and conferences. In 2010-2011, Egyptian artist Dalia Sobhi decorated the monastery chapel with beautiful Coptic-style murals. The chapel was solemnly inaugurated in 2013 by H.H. Pope Tawadros II during his visit to Brenkhausen. H.E. Bishop Anba Damian, who first came to Germany in 1981 in the course of his specialist training and was employed as a senior physician in Baden-Württemberg until 1991, decided after that time to pursue a life of service to the Coptic Church. With his admirable work in Brenkhausen and his media presence, he has made the Coptic Church known in Germany. As a connoisseur of both worlds, he promotes integration and understanding between the occidental and oriental cultures. One focus of his work is therefore also ecumenical cooperation and intensive contacts with Catholic and Protestant congregations. After the attack on the Coptic Church in Alexandria on New Year’s Eve 2010, some of the seriously injured victims were brought to Germany for treatment on the initiative of H.E. Bishop Damian. In addition to the Coptic Monastery, he is currently also caring for some ancient Oriental congregations and over 600 refugees in the nearby Central Accommodation Facility in Borgentreich. A temporary house of worship for Christian refugees has been set up there, where services are held regularly.