Bishop Mouneer Provides Update on Egypt Situation

Posted by Sarah Caughey on Wed, 02 Feb 2011 | 0 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to del.icio.us Post this to Facebook

Egyptian President Murbarak announced on Tuesday that he plans to leave office at the next polls, as well as promising constitutional reform. But many protesters continue to call for his immediate departure, feeling that these pledges are insufficient with hundreds of thousands of people gathering across the country on Tuesday in the largest rally since protests began.

Speaking with CMS Ireland today, Bishop Mouneer of the Episcopal / Anglican Diocese of Egypt shares,

“In the midst of the turmoil which Egypt is going through, we have felt that the Lord is very near to us. We have experienced his peace, and we were assured of his protection. In most of our churches and homes, there have been prayer meetings for the situation and for our beloved country Egypt. All our churches are safe, although they have not been guarded by the security since Friday when all the security were withdrawn. This assured us that the one who protects the churches is the Lord of the Church.

“Yesterday demonstrations were very peaceful, in spite of the huge number that gathered in the middle of Cairo. We praise the Lord that we have now the internet back, and we can communicate with you all. This morning the security also returned to guard the churches as normal.

In the midst of the turmoil which Egypt is going through, we have felt that the Lord is very near to us.

“Yesterday, President Mubarak made it very clear that he will not seek re-election after he finishes his term in November 2011. He appointed Mr. Ibrahim Soliman as a Vice-President. He has a good reputation among Egyptians. This appointment ruled out the possibility of appointing the President’s son as a successor. President Mubarak also appointed a new Prime Minister, Mr. Shafik who was the Minister of Civil Aviation (Egypt Air, etc…). He is a very good man and has done a lot of improvement in his previous Ministry. President Mubarak also called for a review for the Constitution to allow democracy; he also assured the people that those who were responsible for the violence, destructions, looting, escape of prisoners, etc… will be brought to judgment.

“Our concern was that extremist groups would take advantage of the demonstrations to push for violence. We thank God that this did not happen. It seems that the majority of the youth who are demonstrating are aware of this possibility. Many of them started to see this possible risk. The youth who were interviewed by the television yesterday mentioned that all what they need is democracy. Many groups this morning are demonstrating in support of President Mubarak, the new government, and peaceful transfer of authority at the end of the Presidents term.

“Egypt is a very important country in the whole of the Middle East, and whatever happens in Egypt affects the rest of the countries. I was amazed at how the President of Yemen, this morning, announced that he will not seek re-election and will not promote his son to be the next president. We pray that we can set a good example to the surrounding countries.”

Bishop Mouneer was also able to inform us that his Administrator had just returned from Tahrir Square and where fights broke out between supporters and opponents of President Hosni Mubarak. He also said that over 60,000 people were now supporting President Mubarak.

At the time of speaking with the Bishop, it appeared that the protestors were moving on from Tahrir Square. However, the situation in Egypt continues to be unstable, with news coverage continuing to report tension and even violent clashes between supporters and opponents of the President. The army are also reported to be on the outskirts of Tahrir Square. You can visit the live news feed on BBC News by clicking here.

PRAYER REQUESTS

Bishop Mouneer has sent us prayer requests and expresses his gratitude to all those who are praying for Egypt at this time.

- Our churches and institutions, so that we can fix our eyes on God who is in control. May what is happening help us to draw nearer to God and to know that the time is short.

- The end of demonstrations, especially in view of the changes that President Mubarak announced. This will bring Egypt back to normal and the curfew will be ended.

- The new government, in order to achieve the desired targets in serving the people, especially the Minister of Interior who is now trying to re-build the trust with the people of Egypt.

- People to find their needs of food and health care.

- Wisdom for the youth, in order not to allow the extremists to stir them up.

- The families who lost their loved ones in the violence, and those who are injured.

- Our beloved Egypt to recover this turmoil.

CMS Ireland supporters will also be glad to hear that the Bishop reports that CMS Ireland friend, Rev Canon Raj Sathyaraj and his wife were safe in Port Said.

Please join with us in praying for and with our partners and brothers and sisters during these difficult times.

(Helpful sources for more information on the situation in Egypt include the BBC and Reuters websites.)

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