Independent Catholic News logo Welcome Visitor
Saturday, March 25, 2017

Articles related to Egypt


Egypt: Tour operators plan 'Way of the Holy Family'
Egypt: Tour operators plan 'Way of the Holy Family'

News that Pope Francis is visiting Egypt next month is encouraging tour operators to promote the country as a destination for Christian pilgrims. Two years ago, a pilgrimage route: the 'Way of the Holy Family' was identified, following in the footsteps of Mary, Joseph and the Infant Jesus on their journey back to Palestine from Egypt. This starts from the town of Al-Arish -

Read More ...
Pope to visit Egypt
Pope to visit Egypt

Pope Francis will travel to Egypt at the end of next month. Greg Burke, Director of the Holy See Press Office, said in a statement today (Saturday 18 March); "In response to the invitation from the President of the Republic, the Bishops of the Catholic Church, His Holiness Pope Tawadros II and the Grand Imam of the Mosque of Al Azhar, Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed el-Tayyib, His Holiness Pope Francis will make an Apostolic trip

Read More ...
Egypt: Red Crescent helps Copts fleeing jihadists
Egypt: Red Crescent helps Copts fleeing jihadists

Egyptian Red Crescent volunteers are among the groups offering support to Christians fleeing IS/Daesh jihadists who stormed into their villages killing a number of people in seven brutal attacks last week. The majority of Christians have reached the city of Ismailia, on the west bank of the Suez Canal, halfway between Port said and Suez. In the city the Red Crescent are helping displaced Christian families receive accommodation and basic necessities. Over the weekend

Read More ...
Bishop Angaelos voices concern over spiralling attacks on Egyptian Christians
Bishop Angaelos voices concern over spiralling attacks on Egyptian Christians

His Grace Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom, has issued the following statement on the recent spate of attacks against Coptic Christians in Egypt, including the recent attacks in Al-Arish, Sinai - which, he says "have gone largely unnoticed by the international community." Bishop Angaelos said: 'I have now drafted and redrafted this statement numerous times over the past weeks, wanting to say something about the deadly attacks experienced by

Read More ...
Egypt: Coptic father and son killed in latest attack in Sinai
Egypt: Coptic father and son killed in latest attack in Sinai

The bodies of two murdered Coptic men were found on 22 February in the city of Al-Arish in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, the latest in a series of sectarian killings since 31 January. State security officials told the Daily News Egypt newspaper that the body of 65 year-old Saied Hakim was found with gunshot wounds to his head, while his 45 year-old son Medhat had been burned alive. The murders are the latest in a series of sectarian killings in Al-Arish that began on 31 January, when 35 year-old Coptic trader Wael

Read More ...
Egypt: Extremists committing 'horrific acts every day' against Christians
Egypt: Extremists committing 'horrific acts every day' against Christians

Aid to the Church in Need has received reports that extremist Islamists are carrying out daily atrocities against Christians - including kidnapping and murder. A source, who asked to remain anonymous for security reasons said: "There are many extremists Muslims who commit horrific acts every day - every day we hear about another Christian being murdered... Every day we hear about a fight, a revenge... Al Saed is full of these extremists." Al Saed is a region in southern Egypt, covering the south of Cairo, the Suez Canal area and the Sinai Peninsula.

Read More ...
Egypt: Prosecutors drop investigation of attack on elderly Christian woman
Egypt: Prosecutors drop investigation of attack on elderly Christian woman

Prosecutors in Egypt's central governorate of Minya have suspended investigations into the assault on a 70-year-old Coptic Christian woman, Suan Thabet, who was stripped naked and paraded in the streets by a Muslim mob last May. After the attack, President Abdel Fattah al Sisi promised a speedy investigation, and at least eight people were arrested among 14 suspects of having taken part in sectarian violence. But the woman's lawyer announced that on Saturday, January 14 the prosecutors were dropping the case due to "lack of sufficient evidence".

Read More ...
Bishop Angaelos reflects on day after deadly attack on church in Cairo
Bishop Angaelos reflects on day after deadly attack on church in Cairo

Today is a day of many emotions: sadness, nervousness, uncertainty, and understandably even anger at times. That is because yesterday was a day in which we witnessed the worst of humanity, when innocent women and children who decided to worship their God in their spiritual home had their lives needlessly and senselessly ended without warning. They were used as pawns; a means to an end. To the perpetrators of this heinous crime, their lives clearly held no greater value than scribbles on a strategic page; a plan that was to be executed for a cause to which they were merely incidental, collateral

Read More ...
Vatican: Bambinelli Blessing, prayers for victims of war and terror attacks
Vatican: Bambinelli Blessing, prayers for victims of war and terror attacks

Pope Francis welcomed the children of Rome for the traditional 'Bambinelli Blessing' in St Peter's Square on Sunday On this day, the Third Sunday of Advent, Roman boys and girls bring the Baby Jesus from their Nativity sets to Saint Peter's Square to be blessed by the Pope. Thousands of children, clutching their Bambinellis listened as the Holy Father thanked them for coming, and wished them a happy Christmas. He asked them to remember to pray for him when they said their prayers before their Christmas cribs, and assured them that he prayed for them, too.

Read More ...
Egypt: Christian community attacked by mob
Egypt: Christian community attacked by mob

Buildings belonging to the Coptic community of Al-Nagameesh village in the Sohag governorate, Upper Egypt, were attacked on 25 November by a mob that thought a community centre was being used as a church. A crowd emerged from the local mosque, after noon prayers and proceeded to the Coptic community, setting ablaze the four storey building they believed was being used as a church. The Coptic community had applied for permission to build a church; however, the building in question was used as a care home for the elderly and a nursery.

Read More ...
Egypt passes controversial law on church building and renovation
Egypt passes controversial law on church building and renovation

The Egyptian Parliament has approved a controversial new law governing the building and renovation of churches by a two-thirds majority, following four hours of at times impassioned debate. Although the new law, passed on 30 August, fulfils a constitutional commitment to pass legislation regulating the sensitive issue of church construction and renovation, it has been criticised by a number of Coptic MPs, who claim it is "restrictive" and was "imposed on Christians."

Read More ...
Christians concerned about Egypt's new law on church construction
Christians concerned about Egypt's new law on church construction

Egypt's parliament has approved a landmark law on the construction of churches, but it has come under criticism from some observers and groups belonging to the Egyptian Christian community. The President of the Parliamentary Assembly, Ali Abdel Aal, confirmed at the end of the parliamentary session on 30 August that the law was voted by more than two-thirds of the 596 members of Parliament, mostly belonging to the majority that supports President Abdel Fattah al Sisi.

Read More ...
Egyptian authorities urge to act after latest attack on Christians
Egyptian authorities urge to act after latest attack on Christians

Homes belonging to Coptic families in Saft al-Kharsah village in Beni Suef Province, Upper Egypt, were destroyed by a mob on 22 July amid rumours that one storey of a man's home was being turned into a church. The violence began when a crowd gathered after noon prayers and began hurling rocks and projectiles at the houses. In a brief video filmed from the balcony of one of the buildings, frightened children watch as the mob approaches before retreating indoors.

Read More ...
Bishop speaks out against targeted attacks on Egypt's Copts
Bishop speaks out against targeted attacks on Egypt's Copts

Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom, issued the following statement on 25 July concerning increased attacks against Egypt's Christian community: Egypt is undoubtedly going through a formative stage of its contemporary history. Having emerged from uprisings and changes in Government, dealing with resulting pressures on its economy and infrastructure..

Read More ...
Egypt: Coptic Orthodox nun accidentally killed in crossfire
Egypt: Coptic Orthodox nun accidentally killed in crossfire

A Coptic Orthodox nun was killed in accidental shooting in Egypt on Tuesday. The sister's community in Cairo said in a statement that Sister Athanasia, was killed while traveling in a car on the road connecting Cairo to Alexandria, heading towards the monastery of Mar Girgis in Khatatba. The vehicle in which the nun was travelling, with the driver and two of her sisters, was caught in the crossfire, and allegedly, by stray bullets in a shootout taking place on the road between two local family clans.

Read More ...
Egypt: Mob in arson attack on four Christian homes
Egypt: Mob in arson attack on four Christian homes

Four houses belonging to members of the Coptic community in Kom El Loofy village in Samalout, Upper Egypt were torched on 30 June by a mob responding to rumours that a church was being built on land owned by a Coptic man and his brother. Prior to the arson, Mr Ashraf Khalaaf had been summoned to the local police station to sign a statement to the effect that the construction work underway on his land was not for a building that would be used for the purposes of worship. According to the Egypt Today newspaper (El Masri El Youm)

Read More ...
Egypt:  Coptic priest killed by IS
Egypt: Coptic priest killed by IS

A Coptic priest, Father Rafael Moussa, was killed in Al Arish in the north of Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, in an attack claimed by the local branch of the Islamic State. The murder took place on Thursday, June 30, on the third anniversary of the demonstrations against the then President Mohamed Morsi, which resulted in his deposition on July 3 and the seizure of power of the current Head of the State, the then Minister of Defense, Abdel Fatah to Sisi.

Read More ...
Bishop Angaelos comments on attack on Coptic village in  Egypt
Bishop Angaelos comments on attack on Coptic village in Egypt

On 20 May 2016 a violent mob shamefully stripped Soad Thabet, an elderly woman, of her clothes and paraded her through the streets of El Karm village in Egypt as a result of unsubstantiated allegations concerning her son having an affair with a Muslim woman. Since the attack, the woman in question has categorically denied the claims on national television, and as investigations continue, the armed forces, at the request of the Egyptian president, have begun to rebuild Christian homes torched during the attack. His Grace Bishop Angaelos, General

Read More ...
Pope Francis meets with Grand Imam of Egypt
Pope Francis meets with Grand Imam of Egypt

Pope Francis received the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Sheik Ahmed Muhammad Al-Tayyib yesterday. Vatican Press Office director, Fr Federico Lombardi said the 30 minute meeting was "very cordial" and that the Grand Imam of Egypt "was accompanied by an important delegation, which included: Dr Abbas Shouman, Undersecretary of Al-Azhar; Dr Mahmaoud Hamdi Zakzouk, member of the Council of Senior Scholars of Al-Azhar University

Read More ...
Egypt: Christian and Muslim leaders united against child marriage
Egypt: Christian and Muslim leaders united against child marriage

The Islamic University of Al Azhar - considered the most authoritative theological-academic institution of Sunni Islam - and the Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate signed a programmatic document which outlined their shared commitment to fight forms of violence and abuse against children. The joint statement, prepared under the auspices of UNICEF, was signed on Monday, May 9 by Coptic Orthodox Patriarch Tawadros II and by Sheikh Ahmed al Tayyeb, Great Imam of al-Azhar.

Read More ...
Egypt: Coptic priests proclaim Easter in cafes and streets
Egypt: Coptic priests proclaim Easter in cafes and streets

In Egypt, Coptic churches, who follow the Julian calendar, are celebrating Holy Week, during which, traditionally, greetings and good wishes are expressed to the Copts by representatives of various institutions. Ahmed al Tayyeb, great Imam of Al Azhar, went to the Coptic Cathedral in Cairo to personally express his Easter greetings to Orthodox Coptic Patriarch Tawadros II. Some Coptic Orthodox priests of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of Minya, Upper Egypt, decided to leave their parishes to go to celebrate moments of prayer in the streets, in cafes

Read More ...
Egypt: Coptic schoolboys receive maximum sentences for blasphemy
Egypt: Coptic schoolboys receive maximum sentences for blasphemy

Three teenage Coptic boys have been sentenced to five years in jail, while a fourth was sentenced to an indefinite detention period in a juvenile detention facility after being convicted on charges of blasphemy, insulting Islam, and fomenting sectarian strife on 25 February. The five-year sentences handed down to the teenagers are the maximum penalty for these charges. According to the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), a request by their lawyer for the video to be screened in court was refused once again. The teenage students are

Read More ...
CSW calls on Cameron to raise religious freedom with Egyptian president
CSW calls on Cameron to raise religious freedom with Egyptian president

Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) has written to Prime Minister David Cameron urging him to raise human rights concerns, including long-term issues regarding freedom of religion or belief, with President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi during his official visit to the UK this week. President Sisi's visit comes at a time when terrorism has been on the increase across Egypt. While most acts of terror are concentrated on the Sinai region where the jihadi group and Daesh (Islamic State) affiliate Anṣār Bayt al-Maqdis is based, regular bomb explosions targeting government, judicial and security buildings,

Read More ...
 Egyptian TV presenter sentenced to prison for 'contempt of religion'
Egyptian TV presenter sentenced to prison for 'contempt of religion'

Egyptian TV presenter Islam al-Beheiry has been sentenced to five years in prison with labour for 'contempt of religion.' al-Beheiry presented 'With Islam', a religious talk show that debated such topics as punishment for apostasy (leaving Islam), early marriage and the teachings of Islam's Prophet Muhammad. Al-Azhar, Sunni Islam's foremost religious institution, filed accusations against Beheiry that included propagating extremist ideology, insulting Islamic scholars, attempting to destabilize national peace and broadcasting ideas that affect 'the fundamentals of religion'.

Read More ...
Book: 'The Spirit of Peace' by Mary Grey
Book: 'The Spirit of Peace' by Mary Grey

In 1922 Christians made up 51% of the population of Jerusalem. Now, only 2% of Palestinians are Christian. In "The Spirit of Peace" the theologian Mary Grey explores the decimation of this ancient community, linking it with the recent sectarian cleansing of Christians from Syria, Iraq and Egypt. "They discovered they were invisible," she concludes, "unacknowledged, dismissed, denounced or forgotten by fellow Christians throughout the world, especially in the United States." Yet, Grey also puts their suffering in the wider context of the Palestinian people, whom, she believes, have endured a terrible

Read More ...
Egypt: Muslim Imams, Catholic priests begin preaching together in schools
Egypt: Muslim Imams, Catholic priests begin preaching together in schools

The collective 'mission' of a large group of imams linked to al Azhar - the biggest theological centre of Sunni Islam - and Coptic priests began yesterday in the Egyptian province of Minya. The imams and priests are visiting schools together throughout the province. They are meeting students and organising conferences and debates, with the intention of building a culture of encounter and peace as the basis of peaceful social and religious coexistence. The initiative, supported by the Grand Imam of Al Azhar Ahmad al-Tayyeb and Coptic Orthodox Patriarch Tawadros II,

Read More ...
Archbishop Welby visits Egypt;  offers condolences for murdered Christians
Archbishop Welby visits Egypt; offers condolences for murdered Christians

A few days after Cardinal Nichols visited Christian refugees in Iraq, the Archbishop of Canterbury has visited Egypt to offer his condolences following the murder of 21 Coptic Christians in Libya. During the two-day visit Archbishop Justin Welby met with the head of the Coptic Church, His Holiness Pope Tawadros II, and the Grand Imam of al-Azhar. He also met with the President of Egypt, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. On Sunday evening he preached at a joint Egyptian-Sudanese Eucharist service at All Saints Cathedral in Cairo.

Read More ...
Libya: Christians abducted -   for Islamists they are 'legitimate targets'
Libya: Christians abducted - for Islamists they are 'legitimate targets'

Twenty Egyptian Copts were taken from their homes in the city of Sirte last week. In the same city, a few days earlier, an Egyptian Copt couple and their teenage daughter were killed. The abductions have triggered reactions in Egyptian society and in the Coptic Church. A delegation of tribal Egyptian leaders has traveled to Libya to start negotiations with local tribal leaders in an effort to obtain the release of the hostages.

Read More ...
Viewpoint: What future do Christians have in the Middle East?
Viewpoint: What future do Christians have in the Middle East?

I met Saad on a sweltering hot day, 90 degrees in September no less, just as we were both leaving Pope Benedict XVI’s Papal Mass in Beirut in 2012. I had spotted him amid the tens of thousands in attendance that day because he had an Iraqi flag draped across his shoulder. Saad told me he was one of a group of 21 Chaldean Catholics who had travelled from Kirkuk in Iraq to attend the Mass. Chaldeans are one of the oldest Christian communities in the world and along with other Iraqi Christians and Muslims were suffering persecution 

Read More ...
Actor Stephen Baldwin presents prize to film on Egypt's suffering church
Actor Stephen Baldwin presents prize to film on Egypt's suffering church

A film shot on a tourist camera ­ has won a top award at the UK Christian Film Festival Amazing Grace, which documents a wave of attacks against Christians by members of the Muslim Brotherhood, was produced by Release International, which serves persecuted Christians worldwide. It won Best Informational Video at the Christian Film Festival. The award was presented by Hollywood star Stephen Baldwin at the Christian Resources Exhibition at Sandown Park, Esher. '"A very powerful story, powerfully told", was the verdict of Festival director Ray Horowitz.

Read More ...
Holy Land: Gaza Christians also want to meet Pope Francis
Holy Land: Gaza Christians also want to meet Pope Francis

While great preparations are underway in Israel and Palestine, ahead of Pope Francis' visit next week, in the Gaza Strip little is happening. Although this area is part of the Holy Land – the Holy Family passed through it on their way to Egypt – it is a separated area. Isolated from the world because of a siege that has lasted several years, many people living in the Gaza Strip feel that the world has forgotten them. For the small Christian community of Gaza every day is a new challenge. During the month of May, which is dedicated to the Virgin Mary, 

Read More ...
Egypt: Coptic Catholic bishop speaks out against death penalty for 500 members of  Muslim Brotherhood
Egypt: Coptic Catholic bishop speaks out against death penalty for 500 members of Muslim Brotherhood
The Coptic Catholic Bishop of Assiut, Kyrillos William,  has spoken our against the death sentences which the Court of Minya ruled against 500 members of the Muslim Brotherhood. Bishop William said: "There is the hardness of a judgment that is not final, and we have to wait. But in any case, the Church is against the death penalty. From a Christian conscience point of view, the death penalty can never be the way to solve problems".  The sentences which have been condemned by human rights campaigners around the world,
Read More ...
Vatican: Major interfaith initiative to combat slavery launched
Vatican: Major interfaith initiative to combat slavery launched
Eradicating modern slavery and human trafficking across the world by 2020 is the objective of a ground-breaking agreement between Catholic, Anglican and Muslim leaders announced at the Vatican on 17 March. Pope Francis and Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby have personally given their backing to the newly-formed Global Freedom Network. The agreement to help eradicate an injustice affecting up to 29 million people was co-signed on behalf of the Holy Father
Read More ...
 Text: David Alton on 'Paying a price for belief'
Text: David Alton on 'Paying a price for belief'

Lord Alton gave the following lecture in Brentwood on 12 March 2014. Barely a day passes without reports of some new atrocity being committed against Christians. These are four stories from the last few days from just one country – Egypt: 1. Arabic media has reported the murder of a Syrian Christian family who had been living in Alexandria. A 44-year-old man, his 35-year-old wife, their six-year-old son and the wife’s brother were stabbed to death at their home on 17 February. The attackers set the house on fire.

Read More ...
Women from 170 countries to pray for Egypt
Women from 170 countries to pray for Egypt
Women from 170 countries and regions across the world, including the United Kingdom, will pray for Egypt on Women’s World Day of Prayer on 7 March. A number of women from the Coptic Orthodox Community in the United Kingdom will be speaking at church and community services across the country on the role of women in Egypt and their contribution to their societies. They will also comment on the challenges faced by women in light of the recent uprisings. Members of various denominations will gather across the world to show solidarity
Read More ...
Egypt: police stage major operation to protect Christians
Egypt: police stage major operation to protect Christians

In the first three days of February, Egyptian security forces have carried out a huge operation in the city of Assiut to dismantle an organized crime network that has staged many kidnappings, robberies, violent attacks and extortion against the local Coptic community. The Coptic Catholic Bishop of Assiut, Kyrillos William said this intervention marks a decisive change of policy in the activities of the local police. He said: "For months and months, Coptic families and entire communities in Assiut

Read More ...
US bishop in solidarity visit to Middle East
US bishop in solidarity visit to Middle East
Bishop Richard E Pates of Des Moines, Iowa, chairman of the US bishops' Committee on International Justice and Peace, will visit the Middle East January 6-17 in support of the local Church and peace talks in the region. Expressing solidarity with those countries seeking peace in many areas of the world, Bishop Pates echoed the words of Pope Francis in his Urbi et Orbi message, particularly addressing the violence faced in Syria, the Central African Republic, South Sudan and the Holy Land. “Too many lives have been shattered
Read More ...
Pope Francis appeals for religious freedom in Middle East
Pope Francis appeals for religious freedom in Middle East
Pope Francis today appealed for universal respect of the basic right to religious freedom, especially in countries where Christian communities are struggling minorities. The call came in the second of two addresses to the Patriarchs and Major Archbishops of Eastern Churches, who are visiting Rome this week for the Plenary Assembly of the Congregation for Eastern Churches.... He said: “The Bishop of Rome will not rest so long as there are men and women, of any religion, affected in their dignity, deprived of life’s basic necessities, robbed of a future,
Read More ...
Westminster: MP compares persecution of Christians to Kristallnacht
Westminster: MP compares persecution of Christians to Kristallnacht
A British MP has told a parliamentary debate that the persecution of Christians today should be compared to the Kristallnacht attack on Jews instigated by the Nazis. Listing "a preponderance" of anti-Christian violence, including forced conversions on pain of death, kidnappings and attacks in Christian homes, churches and businesses, Fiona Bruce MP highlighted increasing reports of "extreme persecution", especially in the Middle East. Fiona Bruce said: "We should be crying out with the same abhorrence and horror
Read More ...
Egypt: two years after massacre, Christians wait for justice
Egypt: two years after massacre, Christians wait for justice
On the second anniversary of the massacre of Maspero, in which the Egyptian army massacred 23 Coptic Christians, on 9 October, hundreds of people took part in a a vigil in candle lit vigil, walking in the streets where the killing had taken place The participants carried photos of the victims, and denounced again the impunity with which the perpetrators of the massacre had carried out their crimes. They particularly blamed former General Marshal Hussein Tantawi and senior representatives of the army.
Read More ...
Egypt: Coptic Pope tells Christians 'hatred must not enter our hearts'
Egypt: Coptic Pope tells Christians 'hatred must not enter our hearts'
After a suspension of about 10 weeks, because of clashes which rocked the country following the deposition of Islamist President Morsi, the Coptic Orthodox Patriarch Tawadros II yesterday returned to appear in public at the traditional meeting of prayer and catechesis held every Wednesday afternoon at the Coptic Cathedral in Cairo. In his preaching - held in conjunction with the Coptic New Year - the first day of the year according to the ancient Egyptian calendar – Pope Tawadros made clear reference to the Coptic Christians who were killed
Read More ...
Egypt: ACN director appeals for peace after sudden increase in attacks on Christians
Egypt: ACN director appeals for peace after sudden increase in attacks on Christians
The UK head of Aid to the Church in Need is calling on people to pray for peace in Egypt after a sudden spike in attacks on Copts in the wake of President Mohammed Morsi’s dramatic downfall. Neville Kyrke-Smith, whose fact-finding trip to Egypt coincided with the demonstrations that preceded President Morsi’s fall from power, spoke of his concern about a “specific and targeted assault” on Christians across the country since the change of regime.
Read More ...
Coptic Orthodox Bishop prays for peace in Egypt
Coptic Orthodox Bishop prays for peace in Egypt
What has been seen in the streets of Egypt over the past week would have been considered by many as impossible, especially when set against the backdrop of two years which commenced joyfully, but became increasingly challenging through a state of fragmentation, a failing economy and a weakened state of law and order. This situation deteriorated further when the state of social fragmentation developed into one of complete polarisation, and the hopes that were held for a strengthened economy, a unified people, and an empowered, reborn nation in 2011 were not realised.
Read More ...
Egypt: Murder by the Cathedral
Egypt: Murder by the Cathedral
The UK director of Aid to the Church in Need has given a first-hand account of last weekend's mass protest in Egypt – in which at least three people died in a drive-by shooting near Assiut's Coptic Catholic Cathedral. Passing on appeals for prayers for peace from two senior clerics, Aid to the Church in Need's Neville Kyrke-Smith described being in Assiut, on the banks on the Nile in Upper Egypt, as the city was consumed by protests. Mr Kyrke-Smith said: "I left Assiut last night [Sunday 30 June] where there was a lot of violence in the streets and protests taking place.
Read More ...
Egypt: Patriarch calls for prayer as protest looms
Egypt: Patriarch calls for prayer as protest looms
The leader of Catholic Copts has called on the world to pray for peace in Egypt amid growing tensions as millions throng the streets in rival protests. Coptic Catholic Patriarch Ibrahim Sidrak of Alexandria highlighted the growing crisis and unrest across the country in the build-up to a weekend of demonstrations marking one year since Mohammed Morsi became the country's first Islamist president. With protests already attracting nearly three million people and signs that the numbers will dwarf
Read More ...
Egypt: CSW expresses concern at 'disproportionate' sentencing of NGO workers
Egypt: CSW expresses concern at 'disproportionate' sentencing of NGO workers
Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) has voiced deep concern at the sentencing of 43 NGO employees, who were convicted of working in Egypt illegally by the Cairo Criminal Court on 4 June 2013. The employees, who include foreigners, received sentences ranging from one year to five years, though many were convicted in absentia. The trial of the 43 defendants began on 5 February 2012. The charges against them included conducting research, political training, surveys and workshops without licenses, training political parties and groups,
Read More ...
'Woefully inadequate' government report 'downplays' persecution of Christians
'Woefully inadequate' government report 'downplays' persecution of Christians
The UK head of an international Catholic charity has attacked a government report on human rights violations, saying it "glosses over" the growing problem of persecution against Christians. Neville Kyrke-Smith, national director of Aid to the Church in Need (UK), said the Foreign and Commonwealth Office 2012 Report on Human Rights and Democracy published this week "downplays the scale of Christian persecution". Although he praised the FCO for considering religious freedom issues in its report,
Read More ...
Egypt: report from Franciscans working in poorest parts of Cairo
Egypt: report from Franciscans working in poorest parts of Cairo
While the political crisis in Egypt has been widely reported around the world, the social and economic impact of these changes on poor families and children has received less publicity. Father Ibrahim Faltas, a Franciscan from the Custody of the Holy Land, describes the harsh reality he witnessed on a recent visit to Egypt: “Some areas in Cairo and Alexandria have turned into a big open-air market," he said. "On every corner, along the streets, on the pavement… women, children and men become sellers of fruit,
Read More ...
Egypt: Church blames Morsi for protest deaths
Egypt: Church blames Morsi for protest deaths
The Catholic Church in Egypt has issued a stinging critique of the country’s president, accusing him of cynical manipulation of the people, and an act of gross incompetence which caused more than 50 deaths. Speaking as spokesman of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Egypt, Fr Antoine Rafic Greiche accused Mohammed Morsi of failing to foresee the need for significant security in protests that turned ugly last weekend. He went on to condemn the Islamist leader’s initiatives to dialogue with the people, indicating that the discussions’ primary purpose was to
Read More ...
Egypt: renewed calls for human rights on second anniversary of uprising
Egypt: renewed calls for human rights on second anniversary of uprising
On the second anniversary of the Egyptian uprising in Tahrir, Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) is continuing to call for the equality of citizenship for all Egyptians, regardless of their religion or beliefs. Two years ago Egyptians of all creeds and backgrounds joined together to demand equality, justice and the rule of law. In the immediate aftermath of the fall of the Mubarak regime, there was hope for a new Egypt, where the rights of all Egyptians would be respected and upheld.
Read More ...
Egypt: mob destroys Coptic church building
Egypt: mob destroys Coptic church building
A building in a village south west of Cairo housing a reception hall and nursery was destroyed yesterday by a mob following a rumour that it was a church. According to Watani Newspaper, around 5,000 Islamist extremists armed with hammers axes and old electricity poles descended on the building in Fanous Village in Tamia District and razed the structure to the ground. The building was owned by a Coptic society affiliated to Mar-Girgis (St George’s) Church and had been erected on land donated to the church by a Coptic villager.
Read More ...
Cardinal Sandri visits Egypt
Cardinal Sandri visits Egypt
Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches visited Egypt last week to celebrate the Year of Faith with the local Church. In his his address to church leaders in Cairo on Wednesday he said: "Doubtlessly, you are experiencing the desert of this very difficult present situation. Perhaps we must guard against letting the desert advance in our consciences and our hearts precisely while we are trying to advance the Gospel.
Read More ...
Egypt: thousands join ecumenical prayers for peace
Egypt: thousands join ecumenical prayers for peace
Up to 10,000 Christians of all denominations gathered in Cairo last Thursday to pray for peace, political growth and stability, church unity and spiritual revival in Egypt. Held at Cairo's massive Cave Church and televised live by SAT-7 ARABIC and SAT-7 PLUS, extracts from the event were also taken by secular TV channels. Two secular Egyptian newspapers published articles on the event and SAT-7's coverage of it. More than 50,000 have so far watched on YouTube, where the clips will continue to be available.
Read More ...
Coptic Orthodox Church prays for new president of Egypt
Coptic Orthodox Church prays for new president of Egypt
..With the announcement of Mr Mohammed Mursi as president, this signifies a new step in the continuing process of change through which Egypt has been travelling over the past sixteen months. This process has come at great cost, and after much dedication and commitment from so many, having been inspired by the faithfulness and courage of the Egyptian people, and leading some to offer even the ultimate sacrifice of their lives.
Read More ...
David Alton voices fear for Egyptian Christians ahead of elections
David Alton voices fear for Egyptian Christians ahead of elections
With under a month to go before polling begins in Egypt's presidential election, there are worrying indications that instead of this election heralding a first step towards a genuine pluralist democracy, Egypt could be poised to elect an Islamist government committed to the harshest implication of Shariah Law. For the Christian Copts amounting to 10% of the
Read More ...
Is Arab Spring turning to Winter?'
Is Arab Spring turning to Winter?'
The UK director of Aid to the Church in Need has warned Scottish parliamentarians that the Arab Spring is threatening to turn into a disaster for Christians in the Middle East – and Western indifference is making the problem worse. Neville Kyrke-Smith highlighted the plight of Christian communities especially in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Egypt,
Read More ...
Coptic bishop comments on first anniversary of Tahrir Square
Coptic bishop comments on first anniversary of Tahrir Square
His Grace Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom released a statement today, to mark the first anniversary of the uprising in Egypt's Tahrir Square. Bishop Angaelos comments on the potential for positive reform.. but also highlights the danger that Christians and indeed Egyptians as a whole now face if
Read More ...
Dr Harry Hagopian on Syria Sanctions and Egypt Elections
Dr Harry Hagopian on Syria Sanctions and Egypt Elections
As the season of Advent begins, the ever-evolving political, social and economic realities of the MENA region once again come into sharp focus for today's Middle East Analysis. In a two-part podcast, Dr Harry Hagopian, the Bishops' Consultant on the Middle East, offers his unique, thought-provoking insight into the current regional power struggles and political manoeuvring with Syria and Egypt taking centre stage.
Read More ...
Egyptian bishop says: 'Don't shoot innocent people'
Egyptian bishop says: 'Don't shoot innocent people'
A senior bishop in Egypt has condemned the military's crackdown on the latest demonstrations and given a robust defence of the protestors. Bishop Antonios Aziz Mina accused Egypt's military of shooting innocent people and using violence in response to peaceful protests. The Coptic Catholic Bishop of Giza, a major city outside Cairo, said that Christians and Muslims were united in the capital's Tahrir Square in defence of human rights.
Read More ...
Europe should not fear political Islam says Archbishop of Tunis
Europe should not fear political Islam says Archbishop of Tunis
“If they held free and democratic elections in any Arab country at this moment,  Islamic inspired parties would win," the Archbishop of Tunis, Migr Maroun Elias Lahham said yesterday.  "This has  happened in Tunisia and will probably happen in Egypt, but it should not lead to fears and concerns.” Archbishop Lahham explained that the Muslim party Ennahda won, because for years it represented the only real opposition to
Read More ...
Pope calls for respect for minorities in Egypt
Pope calls for respect for minorities in Egypt
Pope Benedict said he was "profoundly saddened by the episodes of violence that took place in Cairo last Sunday", at the end of his general audience with pilgrims in St Peter's Square yesterday. He said: "I share the suffering of the families of the victims and of all the Egyptian people, lacerated by attempts to undermine peaceful coexistence among their communities, a coexistence which it is vital to safeguard,
Read More ...
Bishop Lang voices concern over attack on Christians in Cairo
Bishop Lang voices concern over attack on Christians in Cairo
"It is with great sadness that I learnt of the tragedy that took place in Cairo on Sunday evening, involving the Egyptian Coptic Christian communities and the security forces. Those clashes resulted in dozens of deaths and many more injuries. This latest episode of targeted violence, as well as the long-standing issues between the Egyptian authorities and peoples and the Coptic Church in Egypt, follows the torching last
Read More ...
Egypt: new law may make building churches easier
Egypt: new law may make building churches easier
Obtaining permission to build new churches in Egypt could become almost as easy as constructing mosques according to new government proposals which have won the backing of leading clergy. The scheme, now out to public consultation, proposes to do away with the existing laws whereby church-building plans require permission from the president himself.
Read More ...
Egypt: 12 dead after Muslims attack church
Egypt: 12 dead after Muslims attack church
At least 12 people were killed and dozens injured after a group of extreme Muslims  attacked the Coptic church of the Virgin Mary in the Imbaba district northwest of Cairo. on Sunday.  At the same time youths attacked a block of flats nearby.
Read More ...
Egypt: Patriarch speaks of country's 'historic opportunity'
Egypt: Patriarch speaks of country's 'historic opportunity'
The leader of Coptic Catholics in Egypt has spoken of an 'historic opportunity'  for the people, describing how the country now stands on the brink of achieving the “dream” of a democratic system. Cardinal Antonios Naguib, Patriarch of Alexandria, welcomed the interim military regime’s stated aim of dismantling the autocratic style of government
Read More ...
Podcast: Dr Harry Hagopian discusses situation in Egypt
Podcast: Dr Harry Hagopian discusses situation in Egypt
President Hosni Mubarak, leader of the National Democratic Party and ruler for the past 30 years, has stepped down. In an extended Middle East Analysis, international lawyer and Middle East Consultant to the Catholic Bishops' Conference Dr Harry Hagopian discusses the recent uprising in Egypt and its impact on the region.
Read More ...
Egypt crisis leading to serious shortages in Gaza
Egypt crisis leading to serious shortages in Gaza
The crisis in Egypt has begun to cause serious shortages in Gaza, Caritas Jerusalem reports. Egyptian soldiers fled their posts on the northern border on 30 January, forcing the Rafah crossing,  a critical supply and transit route for the 1.5 million Palestinians living in Gaza, to close.
Read More ...
Pax Christi supports peaceful protest in Egypt
Pax Christi supports peaceful protest in Egypt
This week, the world witnessed events unfold in Egypt, with millions of people peacefully taking to the  streets to demand the justice, basic freedom and human rights they have so long been denied. Ordinary  men and women are at long last seeking to assert their identity and retrieve their dignity after decades of corruption, deprivation and subjugation.
Read More ...
Egypt: missionary warns of growing tensions
Egypt: missionary warns of growing tensions
The climate in Egypt has changed following yesterday's  clashes between peaceful demonstrators in Tahrir Square and the supporters of Mubarak, an Italian missionary working in Cairo said today. Comboni Missionary Father Luciano Verdoscia said that some believed the clashes were caused by paid supporters of Mubarak, or militias from the National Party. 
Read More ...
Egypt: Christians and Muslims march together for change
Egypt: Christians and Muslims march together for change
Both Christians and Muslims have been protesting together in Egypt over the past few days. In an interview with AsiaNews, a Coptic priest said there was no sectarian divide in the demonstrations.  He said: "Christians and Muslims are united in the demonstrations in Cairo and other Egyptian cities. Churches and mosques are places of congregation for demonstrators.
Read More ...
Egypt: parishioners return to bombed church for Sunday Mass
Egypt: parishioners return to bombed church for Sunday Mass
Weeping parishioners gathered for Sunday Mass today at the Saints Church in Alexandria, just a day after a suicide bombing left 21 members of their community dead and more than 90 injured. Riot police backed by armoured vehicles guarded the bloodstained Coptic church throughout the service.
Read More ...
Egypt: seven killed outside church after  Coptic Christmas service
Egypt: seven killed outside church after Coptic Christmas service
Seven people were shot dead early this morning in an incident outside a church in southern Egypt where parishioners were leaving a midnight Christmas Eve service. The Coptic Orthodox Church celebrates Christmas on 7th January. Two vehicles approached the Coptic church in the  Nile community of Naga Hammadi City,
Read More ...

Powered by Bondware
News Publishing Software

The browser you are using is outdated!

You may not be getting all you can out of your browsing experience
and may be open to security risks!

Consider upgrading to the latest version of your browser or choose on below: