Humans of FHC: Chloe Wendlandt


“Coptic Orthodox Christianity is the oldest and most traditional form of Christianity. Coptic is actually a language; when we do our liturgies, they’re in Coptic, Arabic, and English. A lot of our hymns are in Coptic. [Coptic Orthodox] is a form of Christianity; it’s just more traditional and less common in America.

Coptic Churches in Egypt get bombed every day; you just don’t really hear about it in the news. My mom and her family weren’t safe, and that’s one of the main reasons they moved here. My grandfather is a Coptic Orthodox priest, so when they came to America, they opened a bunch of churches. They loved Egypt, but it wasn’t safe for Christians to be walking around over there; they couldn’t even wear their crosses outside.

The Coptic Christian community here is really nice. Most people from our church are Egyptian, and we’re all really close. The priest from Troy, Father Maximus, comes here once a month to do the liturgy for us. Our main church is in Troy; we can’t always go up there, so it’s nice that he comes down occasionally.

It’s super important to me to be involved in the church because my mom came from Egypt. There aren’t many Orthodox Coptic Christians just walking around Grand Rapids, so we’ve been working to make our own Coptic Church here. We have one, but it’s not every week; we’re focused on making a full-time church here.”