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His mother, Nagat Ghatas, points to her son with pride. She sees in him not only a young man of faith, but also a figure of hope — one who might lead others on a better path.

“We are glad that he chose to be close to God,” she says. “Because he takes us closer to God.”

To meet Amir Maher is to meet the future of Christian Egypt — a young person who is embarking on a path he hopes will help carry the faith to others during a challenging moment in his country’s history. He knows his journey is just beginning. But he believes in his heart he is ready — and he is certain the choice he has made is part of God’s will for his life.

“I feel that God was preparing me a long time ago for this,” he says simply.

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Based in Cairo, Magdy Samaan is a Middle East correspondent for the The Telegraph. His work has appeared in Foreign Policy and a number of other journals.

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