Abba Mikhail, Bishop of Assiut, was born in Rahmaniyah village, Nag Hammadi, Qena, in 1921 in a Coptic family. He was ordained a monk on February 19, 1941 at the monastery of St. Macarius at Wadil Natroun. He was named Matthias of St. Macarius.
On August 25, 1946, he was ordained a bishop of the Diocese of Assiut and its affiliates by HH Abba Yousab II, Pope of Alexandria who named him Mikhail. He suffered from many elders as he was so young.
He was the oldest among the bishops of the Coptic Orthodox Church. He took the responsibility of St. Macarius monastery in Wadil Natroun, and then he resigned for health troubles.
He suffered from the terrorist governor of Assiut Mohamed Osman Ismail who incited sectarian strife and conspired against the Coptic Church. He spread rumors that Bishop Mikhail is seeking the Papal throne and that the Copts are after dividing Egypt and the separation of Upper Egypt.
He witnessed seven patriarchs for the Coptic Orthodox Church: Pope Cyril V (Patriarch 112) (1874-1927),Pope John XIX (Patriarch number 113) (1928-1942m), Pope "Makarios III, (Patriarch 114) (1944-1945m), Pope Yousab II (Patriarch 115), Pope Kyrillos (Patriarch 116), Pope Shenouda III, (Patriarch 117) (1971-2012m) and Pope Tawadros II (Patriarch 118) since November 2012. He also performed many miracles for Christians and Muslims.
After a long struggle with diseases of aging, he passed away on Sunday, November 28, 2014, at the age of 93 years old. May God repose his soul. Now, we offer our sincere condolences to Pope Tawadros and the Coptic congregation for the departure of Bishop Mikhail, chief of bishops.