I pass along some paragraphs from a recent Presbyterian Church USA report indicating that Christians remain strong under persecution in Egypt:
As news of violence and turmoil — including the destruction of Christian church buildings — continues to come from Egypt,
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and its partners call for peace and faith in God.
“We as Christians reject violence of all its forms, and regret the suffering experienced by all Egyptians in these events. Along with all Egyptians, we have lost the sense of security, but we never doubt the presence of God with us,” said the Rev. Refat Fathy, Secretary-General, Evangelical Presbyterian Church – Egypt, Synod of the Nile, in a statement.
In the statement, Fathy outlines several points, including full trust in God, the power of prayer and the church’s belief in nonviolence, reconciliation and dialogue.
“The Church is not buildings and bricks; but it is the people of God who must testify about God with energy and clarity. Though some church facilities have been destroyed, still these congregations remain alive and vibrant, fulfilling their purpose to the fullest,” Fathy’s statement reads.
The Coptic Orthodox Church of Egypt has also released a statement in which it condemns the attacks.
“The attacks on our government entities and peaceful churches are terrorizing our citizens both Coptic and Muslim. These actions stand against all religions, morality, and humanity,” reads a statement from the office of Pope Tawadros II.
The statement continues:
“Our sincere condolences are extended to all the victims and martyrs of duty that gave their lives, and we pray for the recovery of all those injured and afflicted. We persevere in our strong national unity and repulse any attempts to polarize our great nation into a secular conflict. We absolutely reject even partial foreign interference in our internal affairs. As the hand of evil extends to burn, kill and destroy; the Hands of God are nearer to protect, strengthen, and build. We have full faith and confidence in the Divine intervention that will navigate the Egyptian people in this delicate time of our history to a better tomorrow and a brighter future filled with justice, peace, and democracy that the people of the Nile Valley so rightly deserve.”