Pope Tawadros II, patriarch of the Coptic Orthodox Church, sent a voice message from hospital in Germany, in which he expressed his condolences to Egyptians for the death of 305 worshippers who were gunned down by Islamist terrorists during Friday (24 November) noon prayers at al-Rawdah mosque in the village of Bir al-Abd in al-Arish, North Sinai.
Overcome through faith and love
The Pope said he was offering his condolences to the families and friends of the victims who, he said, are counted among the martyrs since they were killed as they prayed. He said he prayed for their souls, and for the recovery of all who were injured and all individuals and families who suffered on account of the terror attack.
Pope Tawadros said that terrorism was striking brutally and viciously against all the values and principles by which God desired humans to live, and against the love and compassion that has ruled the lives of Egyptians from time immemorial. “Terrorism,” he said, “strikes in so many places around the globe; we can only overcome it through our unity, faith in God, and joint effort.
“I have absolute faith” the Pope said, “that the Lord who guarded Egypt throughout the ages and through countless difficult times will always protect her against all evil.”
The Pope concluded by saying he was speaking from hospital outside Egypt, and it was only his ill-health that prevented him from being there to share in person the pain of Egyptians. “I pray incessantly for Egypt, her people, her decision makers, and her leaders,” he said.
Pope Tawadros is in Germany for treatment of back pains he has suffered from for a very long time, but which have lately become increasingly painful.
In Cairo, the Pope delegated Anba Yulius, General Bishop of Old Cairo, to visit those who were injured in the terror attack against al-Rawdah mosque. Anba Yulius visited them at Nasser Institute hospital on Sunday 26 November, comforted them and prayed for them.
Anba Seraphim, Bishop of Ismailiya, also paid a visit to another group of those who were injured in the terror attack, and who are now at Ismailiya public hospital.
In other places nationwide, Bishops and Church leaders have been paying visits to Islamic leaders and representatives of the Awqaf (Religious Endowments) Ministry for condolence.
27 November 2017