Love & Hope Bolivia

“Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly…”
~Acts 6:7

Love & Hope Bolivia

“Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly…”
~Acts 6:7

Love & Hope Bolivia

“Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly…”
~Acts 6:7

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Diocese of Bolivia

"Church & Ministry History"

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"Give, impact, change."

- Diocese of Bolivia -

“Growth and Community Service in the Coptic Church”

The Coptic Church in Bolivia, initiated by Father Aghathon Amba Boula, thrived with the arrival of Father Youssef Amba Boula in 2000. Despite challenges, Father Youssef’s outreach efforts led to the establishment of Santa Maria y San Marcos Church in 2006, consecrated by His Holiness Pope Shenouda III. Father Youssef was subsequently ordained as Bishop of Bolivia. The congregation, now around 450 Bolivians, is widely recognized in the media. The church provides various community services, with future plans for an orphanage and daycare, reflecting its commitment to holistic community welfare and growth.

- Bolivian Journey of Faith -

1997 to Present

Church & Ministry History

In 1997, Fr. Aghathon Amba Boula began visiting a small group of Copts living in Bolivia, providing spiritual support for four years until they requested a permanent priest. Responding to this need, His Holiness sent Fr. Youssef Amba Boula, who arrived on December 14, 2000, after taking basic Spanish courses. Initially, Fr. Youssef conducted services in a rented flat in a poor area, discovering that only one Copt remained in Bolivia while the others had moved back to Egypt or immigrated to the U.S.A. He held his first Liturgy three days after his arrival, and despite the absence of Spanish Liturgical books, he translated them within six months, continuing services in the flat’s hall for two years.

Fr. Youssef initiated teaching Coptic Hymns to children and youth in both Coptic and Spanish, organized trips, and engaged with many Bolivians, who were curious about his distinctive attire and Christian faith. He explained the tenets of Orthodoxy, embodying the love of Christ. His compassionate approach fostered strong bonds with the Bolivian community, leading many to embrace the Coptic Church and undergo baptism. Fr. Youssef also performed various sacraments, including baptism, confirmation, marriage, and the unction of the sick. He authored a book on the Coptic Church in Spanish and published the Coptic Spanish Liturgy Book, significantly enhancing the church’s growth and outreach.

Santa Maria y San Marcos Church

By 2002, the congregation and services were rapidly expanding. Fr. Youssef secured land with a large hall and playground to build a church, attracting media attention and invitations for interviews. He expanded church activities to include teaching, cooking, and crafts. In 2003, he acquired additional land and constructed an activity hall for various services.

Building the Church

In 2004, Fr. Youssef began constructing the new church, completing the structure within nine months. Tasony Sawsan arrived from Egypt to create the church icons, while the Iconostasis was crafted in traditional Coptic style by Bolivian artisans. On February 13, 2006, H.H. Pope Shenouda III, accompanied by bishops and priests, visited Bolivia to consecrate Santa Maria y San Marcos Church, an event widely covered by local media and attended by ecclesiastical and political dignitaries.

Impressed by Fr. Youssef’s dedication, His Holiness ordained him as Bishop of Bolivia on June 11, 2006. The following year, Fr. Hedra Anba Boula joined the ministry, and Brother Milad was ordained as Father Anthony on November 15, 2009. Recently, Brother Riad joined as a deacon in 2010.

The Church of Bolivia Today

Today, the congregation numbers approximately 450 Bolivians who regularly attend church services. The Coptic Church enjoys high regard in Bolivia and positive media coverage. The church has established a bakery and carpentry workshop serving the community. His Grace recently inaugurated the Pope Shenouda III Medical Centre to improve community health and added a library and computer centre to support youth education. Future plans include opening an orphanage and a daycare to assist street children.

This thriving ministry exemplifies the spread of the Coptic Church beyond Egypt, driven by divine grace, the prayers and guidance of His Holiness, and the unwavering dedication of its servants.

Bishop of the Holy Diocese of Bolivia

His Grace Bishop Youssef

Bio And Contact Information

– Date of Birth : 07 March 1967

Ordained as a monk:
St. Paul Monastery at the Red Sea on 23 March 1995

Ordained as Priest:
by H.H. Pope Shenouda on 3 October 2000

Commencement of Service in Bolivia:
14 December 2000

Ordained as Bishop:
11 June 2006


Tel  : (591) 334-42928  |  Cell: (591) 721-95804
Address: 7mo. Anillo Km. 6 Av. Banzer lado Surtidor Lopez Suburb, Bolivia