I do not know why Dr. xxx framed my objection of the nature and the timing of the celebration as an attack to undermine Dr. xx’s accomplishments. I am very proud for Dr. xx’s personal achievements. What I am objecting on, is the method of celebration and the time at which it occurred. All of us, with no exception, felt very saddened for unjust killing; ” it was a dagger through the flesh – or at least that is how it felt - not just by me or members of my family, but by many whose opinions count” said Mr. xxx. So, if this a true and honest feeling, we should have postponed the celebration, which would have sent a clear message to everyone in and out of Egypt that all of us, Muslims and Copts, are saddened, As a matter of fact, this is exactly what happened in our neighborhood when one family had a wedding, and another family in the street had a funeral; the wedding family minimized their celebration out of respect for those in mourning. (May be you could not postponed it), but we could had a short speech, or pray for their souls. Second, I personally object on Belly Dancing as a means of celebration and see it as degradation for women. In addition, Belly Dancing is not of Christian Virtues, nor Egyptian/Coptic Culture.
Calling a peaceful protest for hatred killing of innocent kids a “mob-like behavior” is misleading and a misuse of the word. Watch the following links for visual explanation to the “mob-like behavior”, or look it up on Google:
The following link will show you the peaceful protest; I hope you will recognize the difference.
I definitely agree with the analysis of Mr. xxx, and Mr. xxx, that “the problem is; ignorance, poverty and a defunct judicial system”, and Dr. xxx’s proposed solution of “VARIOUS INSTITUTIONS comprised of individuals whose ONLY agenda is the welfare of Egypt”. These are all wonderful and good thoughts for our country, Egypt. But keeping this thoughtful constructive discussion on the internet and among us will not help Egypt, simply because we do not have the masses to bring such pressure on the Egyptian Government to make the long awaited changes that must occur. We all know that all governments, including the Egyptian government, hate people going out into the street and inform the public by the unjust conditions in their country; that is why the Egyptian Government uses a carrot and stick policy with members of the community to stop any protest; it seems as though the Egyptian Consul general in the Bay Area has had partial success in using this tactic successfully within our local churches. Without people protesting, and pressure from many of the Muslim governments on the Western Governments, the Muslims communities in Kosovo would have been wiped out by the Serbian government. But, the people protested put pressure on the Western Governments to interfere (the word interfere here is positive) and consequently the western army defeated the Serbian army and protected the Muslims of Kosovo. Look also to the mass protests during the civil rights movement which brought the long awaited change for equality between blacks and whites, other mass protest and civil disobedient of the people of India, under Gandhi, which brought a liberation of India. Also, the peoples’ protest against Muslims Arabs of the Northern Sudan killing Muslims, Christian, and Animists in Darfur, South Sudan, pressured the Western Governments with the help of the UN to stop the genocide of the people there. How come the intellectual elite of the bay area churches CAN NOT, see those successful stories? There are hundreds of similar examples, like the Palestinians struggle as well, for example. How come when the Copts ask the international community for help in putting a pressure on the Egyptian Government, we commit “destructive revenge against the whole country and its reputation” and cause “division and hatefulness”; isn’t that double-standard?
If you are a Deacon, you have more responsibility and accountability on your act/behavior, or lack of act/behavior. Our Lord God and Savior Jesus Christ, was against tyranny, oppressions, and dictatorships; He came to bring justice and happiness. To the Deacons of the Coptic Church of Saint Anthony, your patron saint lead demonstrations on behalf of captives under Rome; Saint George and John the Baptist did this as example. Current example for you to emulate is Father Bishoy Kamel, and how he was putting his life to help his people. We have many stories where he helped many Muslims, simply because they are also children of God. Another example from the Catholic Church is Bishop Romero (I have provided links to a movie describing his struggle for the poor).
I am really puzzled with a few priests and some deacons who said that going out and protest against the unjust treatment of the Copts is un-Christian; Apparently they are more Christian and know about Christianity than the Bishop of Los Angeles and all the priest of LA, and more than Bishop Suriel, the Bishop of Melbourne Australia and all the Australian Coptic Priests, and many from other denominations (again link is provided for your convenience). The total number of protests were Coptic Clergy were leading was 22 worldwide. Do all those priests and Bishops do not know Christianity, nor do some of the Bay Area’s community lack the will to stand for justice and fairness? If you are a Deacon, this is also a lack of Christian courage, and a lack of love that will prolong the suffering of the Egyptians as a whole, and Copts in particular.
In this last 2 public demonstration the San Francisco Bay Area Community undertook, I saw many who came out that once thought similarly to your selves, justifying inwardly why they should not go out and protest. But after years of seeing their brethren in Egypt suffer with no ends in sight, they came to realize that peaceful demonstrations are a meaningful way to help the Copts in Egypt, and publicize their hardships.
I never lost faith of God, who worked with St Paul to convert his hatred of Christians into true faith, and will work with all of us to lift the burdens of injustice on his poor people of Egypt.
Bishop Suriel of Melbourne Australia.
بكاء قداسه البابا شنوده الثالث علي حال الاقباط في مصر
نيافة الانبا كيرلس اسقف نجع حمادى يصلي ببكاء مرير