In your way you might face a lot of hardships and there are two main keys to overcome these hardships: first is to not give up and say I can t or its impossible, second is to have alternative always in your life.
People could the obstacles or may be the capabilities you have at a certain time, but you need to always remember that none of these are the real obstacle is yourself to convince yourself with the opposite.
Once you are convinced that you are the only obstacle for any hardships, you need to work on how to overcome this feeling because this is the feeling could destroy you more not others.
There are some benefits for sure for hardships, some of them include that you will be able to know who your friend is and who is not, you would be able to know who loves you and how doesn t.
Also the bible mentioned to not escape from hardships as you learn from it and it teaches us patience and that s completely true.
Our Coptic churches in Egypt and other countries of the Diaspora celebrate the feast of Martyrs (Nayrouz ) which comes on August 11 of each year. It is also known as the Egyptian New Year in the Middle Ages during the Mamluk rule.
It is known that Christianity introduced many saints and millions of martyrs and confessors as a result of their persecution from the early Christian times in the first centuries to the fourth century under the era of the Roman Empire. Under the Islamic caliphate many martyrs have been killed and persecuted till today by terrorist groups supported by Islamists.
Christianity has also offered millions of confessors who were subjected to torture and persecution without martyrdom. The Church placed them in the rank of martyrs and raised them to the episcopal rank after the end of Diocletian s reign.
The Holy Synod of our Coptic Orthodox Church decided last year headed by Pope Tawadros II to name February 15 as a feast for the martyrs of the Church in the modern era, which is commemorating the martyrdom of the Copts of Libya who have adhered to their Christian faith and many martyrs who have been recently killed for their faith. Those who have been injured were called confessors.
Our church celebrates and hail the martyrs and confessors and call their names on the churches and monasteries. Their accounts are mentioned in the Synaxarium. Their relics are celebrated and magnified in the martyrs feasts. Among them, for example, are Saints Peyman, John, Abanoub, Jacob, Melanius and Pope Athanasius as well as the saints Virgin Mary, Saint Nolasadonita. Shall we celebrate a day for the confessors in order to appreciate their role in saving the faith just like we celebrate a feast of the martyrs associated with the Coptic New Year.
The bishop in the Coptic Orthodox Church is the cornerstone of the hierarchy of the clerical pyramid, based on the fact that the real bishop of the church is Christ himself, according to the apostle Peter, For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls. The apostle Paul describes himself and the rest of the disciples as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God
“Let a man so consider us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God.” St. Peter talked about the job of the bishop saying: The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed: Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock; and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away. The bishop here is a trusting agent of service for those who are to inherit salvation.
When we look at the clerical service pyramid in the Coptic church, we find on its summit the Pope, who is the bishop of Alexandria, and the universal church in the fourth century in the Council of Nicaea (325 AD) approved the leadership of the bishop of Alexandria to the church in Egypt and Libya.
At the base of the pyramid, we find the priests who serve the churches and elect one priest in each church to be their leader (Hegumin). We are in front of a tight administrative arrangement and the priesthood remains the same, with various responsibilities between bishops and priests, so it is not possible to speak of a priest without a parish.
What about the general bishop, who is assigned for general tasks without a parish within a geographical area? This pattern was created by His Holiness Pope Cyril VI, when he ordained a bishop for social services and a bishop for education in 1962, and chose them from the staff of his secretariat to help him, so as not to clash with the approval of the synod at the time. It was an evolving and successful experience that confirmed the Church to keep pace with the social developments and management sciences as well.
The matter extended to the administration of Pope Shenouda III, who ordained a youth bishop in 1980, which confirmed the success of the experiment. Pope Tawadros did the same by ordaining general bishops for the bishoprics and then move them or enthrone them in the diocese.
In the context of the revisions of the reformation, the general bishop experience needs to be re-examined for evaluation
The rank of bishop s assistant has disappeared, and the Heugmin rank became useless though he is the most experienced priest in the church that should be able to direct his colleagues.
The general bishop can be moved from his diocese for various reasons, not all of them are objective, because he helps bishop of the city without having a legal basis. The bishop may be jealous of the gerenal bishop for many reasons and simply ask him to leave. Therefore, the ranks of Bishops Assistant and Hegumin should be reconsidered.
In order to teach the bishops how to deal with the general community, parish, priests, administration, government agencies and society, the Monastic School opened by Pope Joannes in 1929 and closed in the 1960s, must be revived.
On the 15th anniversary on the founding of the Coptic United website, I remember the situation happened with those working at the website. Eng. Adly Abadir invited me from Geneva to attend an important meeting with an Egyptian official in Zurich who was able to help the Coptic cause at that time.
Abadir asked me and my colleagues to give the official a warm welcome in order to take the opportunity to show him all Coptic issues and try to find solutions. At that time, he commissioned me to write a legal note of rights and violations for the Coptic cause in order to present it to the Egyptian official.
I did the job and presented the file, but Eng. Adly saw something that made him angry. I asked for the rights in a police form, but he said we don’t big for our rights. We are the authentic identity and the origin. He didn’t talk to me for one week after that and mocked me in front of my colleagues assuring that I shouldn’t do that again.
Since then, I learned that we do not seek the rights and duties of anyone and we shouldn’t compromise knowing our value and that we are the origin and authenticity. Some may claim that we have rights and duties and so do they, but in fact, Copts are the origin of this country.
Recently Sudan could reach agreement for having a prime minister that will help in setting up more stability in Sudan after long time of instability in one of the most unstable countries in Africa.
Sudan is a rich country with its natural resources however, the wars this country is going through from decades has great impact on its progress.
The term Strong Independent Woman has become very famous in Egypt and was criticized by many men thinking that those strong independent women are suffering from mental illness.
Strong independent women are independent and powerful though they may have internal beauty, tenderness, beauty and femininity.
They are strong since they learned to be reliable and help the others. Such strength is related to her soul just like her body. They have to be strong in order to face all kinds of human beings in her regular day.
She is financially independent and can provide for herself and even her family if her husband is not able or willing to work! We can find many women like that in our society.
To those who mock those women, I say that they had to be so since their men were not reliable and the self independent women had to be so in order to keep their pride.
No woman likes to be man and woman at the same time, but their men didn’t protect or provide for them. They apparently don’t like to work harder and harder. Yet, many women were let down by their men. Thus, they had no choice other than being a self independent women.
The Egyptian government heard the Arabic song saying that Egypt will remain dear to us. Thus, it discovered a brilliant way to make such wish come true. It decided to float the currency and increased the prices, and this way, living in Egypt became too dear to the Egypitans!
However, this was not enough for the regime, and it decided to impose an annual tax on the seashore to continue its brilliant policy in making our lives harder.
I have recently visited a friend living in the city of Gronau, Germany. This city is located in the west of Münsterland. The name of the large Catholic church in the center of the city attracted me. It is known as the Church of St. Anthony the Great, and a statue of St. Anthony is located at the entrance of the Church.
It was time of the Holy Mass and the church was really crowned that I couldn’t enter, but I was astonished by its beauty and knew that last year it celebrated 100 years on its foundation.
There are many monuments of civilization, such as the tomb of the martyrs of the Second World War (1939-1945), and some nice gardens. There is a museum for the arts and music near the main train and bus stations of the city of Grenau. However, when I followed the street named after St. Anthony, I found the government hospital, a pharmacy, restaurants, and some shops on the name of the saint.
I was very proud to see an Egyptian saint acknowledged and hailed as founder of monasticism. His role in spreading the Christian faith and monasticism all over the world.
What if the Egyptians including Christians, Muslims, jews, and atheists in addition to the tourists decided to follow the Salafis and wear the niqab? Will they be protected from sexual harassment. It is a tough question, but I will try to answer.
In the beginning of the nineteen century, an English orientalist named Sir Edward William Lane learned Arabic and claimed his conversion to Islam to be able to live among the Egyptians and collect the material of his book, printed in London in 1835 and entitled ‘Traditions and customs of modern Egyptians’
The book was a masterpiece in the presentation of information and wrote in detail in a full chapter on the clothes and fashion of Egyptians in their various sects. He mentioned that women used to wear identical cloth, yet in different colors. Muslim women wore white niqab, while non-Muslim women wore black niqab. He added that non-Muslim women dressed while niqab in secret in order to avoid sectarian discrimination, and possible harassment.
We return to the first question: will niqab prevent harassment in Egypt. The answer is no since they will impose different colors on each sect. This will enable them to target the other groups as much as they want.
Perhaps the answer of Jesus to the cry of some of the Pharisees who called to Him from the crowd “Teacher rebuke Your disciples” , Jesus answered and said to them “I tell you that if these should keep silent ,the stones would immediately cry out” .Luke 19,39-4, can not be applied to the glorious city of OXFORD > For the simple reason that the stones of this city united with the scientists , professors , historians , theologians , priests , monks , don,t keep silent m but tell us , about the miracles of God in history . I can say with John in his book of Revelation that “ … I looked and behold a great multitude ( one thousand people in the conference ) of all nations , tribes ,peoples , and tongues , standing before the throne of the Logos …” . They come from the great tribulation of ignorance and heresies , but the try every day to wash their robes and made them white in the bloody science of the Lamb . They follow the great fathers who said once “ You have to give blood , in order to take Spirit “. The blood of hard work and deep studies “ …in stripes , in imprisonments , in tumults , in sleeplessness , in fastings , by purity , by knowledge , by lon sufferings , by kindness , by the Holy Spirit , by sincere love “ 2 Corinthians 6 ,4-7. Those theologians send , through their feast of the fathers of the Church , a clear message to those who have “ bitter envy and self -seeking n their hearts , who do not boast and lie against the truth” James 13. Those people follow their own minds and divide or mingle the two basic diamensios of Christian life and theolog into an inner fight between spirituality and science , between heart and mind (the two terms are one in Egyptian language and culture Heet ), between Christ of the simple and Christ of the learned ! They have never understood the cy of saint Paul addressed to the divised Corinthians “Is Christ divided ?” 1 Corinthians 1,13 . These people of science gathered in The university of Oxford are seeking the truth of the Bible lived by the ascetics, translated in the Λειτουργία
This is not a joke, but a sectarian reality that dozens of Christian girls experience after one of their parents convert into Islam for any reason. Many times the father go to the Civil Status Authority and change the names of the children to Islamic names and their religion from Christianity to Islam, which is totally accepted though being against the law. Yet, in Egypt they believe that Islam is the best religion for the children.
The child goes to school and is forced to attend classes of Islamic religion or fail in the exam!
As an attorney, I have seen many cases suffer such scenario, including the case of Mario and Andrew whom former president Mubrak ordered that they don t take any exams of religion.
The problem is much bigger than this for girls who find when they grew up that their names have changed from Christian to Islamic names along with their religion. She goes to the court and start a battle to restore her name, and when she succeeds, the name of the father remains Muslim and her identity remains lost and strange.
I know that a number of senior officials don t accept such cases and they demand the Interior Minister to change that, but no response yet. I hope that equality and citizenship advocated by the President will be a good motivation to change that.
I get used to love tennis and watch it and also get used to play Tennis because Tennis is not just a game but is more than a game. There is a recent study states that people play tennis are more healthy and tend to be positive.
When you watch legend like Federer, Nadal you feel that you want to play this game even if you dont have an idea about this game. Tennis is enjoyable and you can live the excitement during a whole Grand Slam.
US open which is the last Grand Slam this year is running now and as always a lot of excitement happens all over the champion, however, you can learn that a talent only is not enough to win and be good in a game or at anything in life.
In a television interview with Farouk El-Baz in 1999, the presenter asked him about the time he will return back home along with all Egyptian scientists abroad in order to develop their own homeland. El-Baz said they should stay abroad to benefit from the valid experience and the is way they can benefit the homeland.
Dr. Ahmed Mostagir, the late great scientist in genetic engineering, has been demanding the following:
• Create a good atmosphere for scientific research.
• Invest in science because its returns is much more than investing in anything else.
Mostagir added that we should invest in minds more than we do on football. He hated football and said we should abandon it to care more for science. The state and private sector should both invest in such researches. All institutions in Egypt should unite to support Egyptians experts abroad and improve their national role.
Egypt s Ministry of Finance said that the government is keen on supporting local industries and benefit from natural resources in order to contribute to the advancement of the national economy, provide more job opportunities for young people, improve the structure of growth and raise its rates to become more sustainable and diversified. According to the agency Bloomberg America, Egypt is the fastest-growing economy in the Middle East which reflects the great opportunities and the promising atmosphere in Egypt in addition to its prominent location between Africa and Asia.
I was delighted to know that Egypt is benefiting from German expertise and creating real opportunities for investment in many modern industrial fields, which was declared by general abdul Monim Taras, head of the Arab body for manufacturing, concerning the new projects with the German party.
I do not know what happened to a stream of Egyptians who have been racist in many cases once against other Egyptians and another against the Syrian comers. It has always been clear throughout Egyptian history that all Abrahamic Religions were welcomed here. Joseph the prophet, St. Mark and Amr ibn al-Aas in addition to the Holy Family lived peacefully in Egypt.
The great port of Alexandria was built and founded by Alexander the Great and the Greek community still lives in Egypt and have clubs, scientists and thinkers, after they became real Egyptians.
Some Egyptians may forget that the modern Egyptian state was founded by Mohamed Ali who was non-Egyptian and he worked with many foreigners including Suleiman Pasha al-Fransawi, the founder of the Egyptian army, and the first Prime Minister of Egypt was Nobar Pasha the Armenian.
Throughout the nineteenth and twentieth century, many nationalities came to Egypt including: French, Italians and Greek who arrived in Egypt and became Egyptians and taught us a lot about music, sewing, business and civil work. The Syrians arrived then and established many journals including Al-Aharam and Rosal Youssef in addition to many other modern arts.
They became Egyptians and the names of some of Egypt s players in the Olympic mission of the second Mediterranean Games held in Barcelona - Spain in 1955 as mentioned by researcher Rami Kamel included many foreign names including Greek, Italian, Syrian and Armeinian, but they were all accepted in the society and became full citizens.
I blame Wahhabism for destroying our Metropolitan culture, and I believe racism and sectarianism need to be faced since it is still spreading unfortunately.
It is strange that Egypt s Christians only protest when a church is closed or a Coptic Christian girl escapes with her Muslim lover. However, she and her lover know nothing about Islam or Christianity.
I believe that refusing to appoint a Copt in a teaching job at the university only because he is a Christian, which is unfair discrimination that deserves protest.
Equal citizenship should be demanded like muslims enjoy their rights in Europe. Copts have to change their culture of protest since their are many things that deserve such protest rather than converting of Coptic women or building churches. This is the reason to decent life and freedom, or else the Copts will stay as Dhimmis behind the walls of churches.
I admit I was not surprised or shocked when the Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir admitted in court that he had received $ 90 million from the Prince Crown Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia, among the 113 million dollars that were found in the house of Bashir at the time of his arrest.
These presidents always emphasize the cleanliness of their hands and show their honesty and honor, and take pride in fighting corruption and refusing any bribes, but they are quite the opposite.
On this occasion I tell you about the bribery offered to President Nasser: In 1955, the revolutionary approach taken by Gamal Abdel Nasser threatened the interests of America and Israel in the region. America has tried to break through the financial discharge of Gamal Abdel Nasser by sending him a bribe.
Lately a lot of media and people started to attack MOhamad Salah especially after his interview with CNN. Im not writing this article to defend Mohamad Salah neither to attack him.
Mohamad Salah like any person can do wrong and can do right. We have to encourage him when he does good and try to consider him human when he does wrong.
Salah is a professional player and tries to do everything professionally, however, he is human as well and can say or do something not right because there is no one perfect.
At the time of her departure, the disciples of Jesus Christ came to her, where she lived in the house of John the Beloved, so that they could pay her farewell. She was cheerful to see them, and she blessed them before her soul was received by her son and savior who also carried her body like she carried him when he was child.
Her miraculous departure was also accompanied by many miracles and appearances till her body was taken to heaven. Her body was too holy to stay in this earth. The church celebrates her departure on 21 of Toba.
She was chosen by God to be the Mother of God, and to take part in the incarnation and the salvation of mankind.
Thus, His Eminence Bishop Benjamin of Menoufia told us in his article The Status of the Virgin explaining to us the value of the Virgin as highlighted in the Bible.
The Virgin was chosen by the Lord as faithful servant of the temple So the King will greatly desire your beauty;
Because He is your Lord, worship Him. (Psalms 45: 11) The angel told her: “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!” Elizabeth also said to her: Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? Even the Virgin Mary said “My soul magnifies the Lord, And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.
The Virgin has become a second sky once the Son of God has taken flesh from her. Her unique qualities gathered in one person that she became intercessor of human race as a loving mother. We praise her saying You are the most honorable intercessor We asks her to pray for the Lord to forgive us our sins. We ask her to spread joy and lead us to repentance.
If you are a follower of the achievements of Egyptians, you must have seen the achievement of Dr. Mirna Hosni, a student of pharmacy at the British University in Egypt who achieved first place over 45 teams, while she stood alone in the competition.
Mirna took only quarter of the time since she started late, which proves her achievement. Yet, this shows disrespect and recklessness of some officials concerning those who represent Egypt abroad. Those responsible didn t read the conditions carefully since the didn t notice that a team should consists of 5 members and not only one.
I congratulate the Egyptian I and the Egyptian women on Mirna s achievement for what she did alone abroad.