Basilios II


The archbishop of Jerusalem (1818-1899). Basilios was born in the village of Al-Dabbah in the governorate of Qenā. When he was twenty-five he entered the monastery of Saint Antony (DAYR ANBĀ ANTŪNIYŪS) in the Eastern Desert. After six years he was ordained priest, and was made archpriest three years later. He was then chosen to be head of the monastery.

In 1856 he became archbishop of the see of during the time of IV (1854-1861), taking the name Basilios. The archbishop of Jerusalem was also considered head of the monastery of Anbā Basilios. He renovated the monastery, which is next to the Holy Sepulcher, and built a church and a building for the patriarchate, as well as rooms for pilgrims and other visitors. The monastery and Church of in Jerusalem were also restored. The archbishop took pains to the church’s sacred objects, especially in DAYR AL-SULTĀN in Jerusalem. In Jaffa, he bought a large orchard where he built a church and monastery for Coptic visitors.

He had many other churches built in different places and restored others. He was well known for his charitable nature and his concern for the poor. He was renowned for his broad-mindedness, honesty, good counsel, and love for the church and his people. Despite ill health, Basilios continued to look after his and its people until his death on 26 March 1899 at the age of eighty-two. He was buried in the bishops’ shrine near the that he had built in Jaffa.