Al Minya, Upper Egypt
Today is Good Friday in Egypt, one of the most important days of the year for Egyptian Christians. Sometime in the early hours of this morning a fire broke out in Al Minya’s large Coptic Christian Church literally razing it completely to the ground and destroying all its contents. The whole of the Christian community went into deep shock and mourning as they gathered for prayer at the site over this tragic loss. The cause of the fire is as yet undetermined. Terrorism has not been ruled out but the facts are not yet in. What we do know is that this was one of the biggest Christian gatherings in the region as people expected to come and worship this morning. Our man in Al Minya. Bro. A.J. shared the deep grief all Christians felt on this, one of the Holiest days of the year. “The people could not stop weeping, everyone was crying!” This is a tremendous blow to the Christians of Egypt and they feel it keenly.
Despite this, their purpose to worship on this day was not derailed. When the ashes cooled all chipped in and cleared the rubble and gathered to worship within the ruins of their church. Bro. A.J. sent me these photos. I was deeply touched to see all the people that came worshipping, literally in the ashes of their despair.
Careless seems the great Avenger; history’s pages but record One death-grapple in the darkness ‘twixt old systems and the Word; Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne,— Yet that scaffold sways the future, and, behind the dim unknown, Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own. – James Russell Lowell
Our Brethren in Egypt have asked nothing of us other than we join with them in prayer.