Traveling westward the Holy Family came to the place now known as Sakha, a town 135 km. north of Cairo. In Sakha we visit the Church of the Holy Virgin, probably built on the location of one of the four prominent monasteries in medieval times in this area. Only one of these monasteries, Dimyana, survived unto this day.

Sakha has become famous in modern days for the discovery of the “Bikha Isus” or the footprint of Jesus in 1984. At a depth of approximately 1.5 m., Halim Philippus, a supervisor in the church, found a light gray stone about eighty centimeters long with a tiny brownish impression. On its back the word ‘Allah’ (God) was written in Arabic. On its top – another stone was found that resembled half a capital from a column.

Halim knew from tradition that the monks in this area who had buried the stone of the footprint of Jesus, had placed this half of a column as a marker on its top. The “Bikha Isus” is now preserved in a glass case for protection. Additionally, near this church you will see a thorn tree, believed to be similar to that from which the crown of thorns of Jesus was made [Matthew 27:29].

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