The new province carries the name of the Anglican Province of Alexandria.
Welby led a procession of bishops and archbishops from the All Saints Cathedral in Cairo’s Zamalek, where the inauguration ceremony started, to the church’s altar, a statement by the church said.
The convoy included Archbishop of the Anglican Province of Alexandria Sami Fawzi, and Archbishop Emeritus of the Anglican Province of Alexandria Mounir Hanna, in addition to a number of priests and deacons.
The new province’s jurisdiction extends over Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Mauritania, Chad, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, and Somalia in North Africa and the Horn of Africa.
Welby referred to the important cultural role and religious value of Alexandria, after which the province was named.
“Alexandria, the ancient centre of learning, is a wonderful name for the province,” Welby said.
Welby said Egypt has “again found its historic place as a place of meeting, of refuge. It has been so from before Jacob and Joseph, it rescued the Holy family”.
Welby also praised Egypt as a “crossroads of world trade, a cradle of urban civilization when Europeans were still fighting with sticks and clubs, painting themselves blue.”
The Anglican Church in Egypt was established as per a decision by Mohammed Ali Pasha, the Ottoman leader who ruled Egypt 200 years ago.
Hanna said the church offers health and educational services as well as other services to refugees and imprisoned people and has launched numerous initiatives to support national and sectarian unity.
The church also plays an important part in the dialogue between the Anglican Communion and Muslims’ Al-Azhar, Hanna added.
The Anglian Communion first announced the launch of the Anglican Province of Alexandria last year as its 41st province worldwide.
The new province was formed due to the independence of the Diocese of Egypt with North Africa and the Horn of Africa from Anglican Province of Jerusalem and the Middle East in May 2020.