As the news of another terrorist attack on the Christian community in Egypt emerges, on behalf of the people of this diocese, I have sent the message below to my dear friend Bishop Angaelos, the General Bishop of the Coptic Church in the UK, and the Moderator of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland.
Your Grace Bishop Angaelos, my dear Brother in Christ
I can hardly believe the news that has just reached me, that on this most Holy Day when the Christian faithful begin our commemoration of the passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ, a passion and death which was for the reconciliation and peace of humankind, the Coptic community attending the sacred liturgies in Alexandria and Tanta have been victims of a bloody terrorist attack. I understand that at least 36 have been killed and many more are seriously injured.
I assure you of my closeness in prayer to you and to your Church at this most sad and troubled time. With other Anglicans in this Diocese in Europe, we pray for those who have died in this attack, that Christ our God will grant them rest with his saints, where there is no pain or grief, but life everlasting. We pray for all who are injured and for those who mourn, for the strength and comfort of the Holy Spirit in their lives. May the Holy Angels keep your people in Egypt safe from further violence. As we have carried our branches of palm we carry in our hearts the lament of your people, who are our brothers and sisters in Christ, trusting in our Lord, who is victorious over sin and death.
Now the authorities in Egypt must act swiftly to bring the perpetrators of this crime to justice, and to protect with ever more vigilance, the Christian minority.
And may God turn the hearts of those who seek to do violence to their neighbour.
With sincere condolence and fraternal love
This prayer comes from the Coptic liturgy:
Disperse the fantasies of the adversaries. Still the tempest. Walk with us and calm our terror. Quench our thirst, kindle the flame of thy love in our hearts. Abide with us, for the day is far spent, and accompany us until daybreak. For thou are our goal and our happiness, Thou alone, O Lord, for ever + Amen.
|HG Bishop Angaelos|