Egypt: One Year On

Posted by Sarah Caughey on Wed, 25 Jan 2012 | 0 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to del.icio.us Post this to Facebook

Today, many Egyptians gathered in Tahrir Square to remember the start of the revolution one year ago, which brought about an end to President Hosni Mubarak’s rule.

BBC World new reports that some of those gathered are celebrating the success of Islamist parties in the recent elections, while others are calling for further political reforms. Others present said they had turned out to remember those who lost their life in the uprising.

To mark the date, Scaf chairman Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi said the state of emergency, which has been in place in Egypt almost continuously since 1967, was to be lifted – something that President Mubarak repeatedly promised and failed to do.

This is a pivotal time for the nation of Egypt. The People’s Assembly (the lower Chamber of Parliament) met for the first time on Monday (You can see what the Parliament looked like by clicking hereBBC World News Website). The elections, which were held over several months, have returned an Islamist majority. The Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) claimed the largest number of seats. A new President will be elected in June, according to the timetable set by Egypt’s military rulers. It is the President who chooses the Government, and so the winners of the election do not automatically assume office.

In a recent newsletter, the Most Rev Dr Mouneer Anis, Bishop of the Diocese of Egypt with North Africa and Horn of Africa, shared his thoughts on Egypt’s future.

“I am sure that you have been following the situation here in Egypt…Since the beginning of 2011, the situation in Egypt can be described as walking in a dark tunnel where you cannot see the end of it. The Alexan-dria bombings, the demolishing of the church in Sole atfieh, the burning of the church in Im-baba and Marinab, and the Maspero Massacre made the tunnel seem even darker.

“All Egyptians, especially Christians, are very concerned and fear the rise of political Islam. In the last year over 100,000 have immigrated out of Egypt, mostly Christians.

“In spite of all this, there were shouts of joy and jubilant singing when I went on 30 December 2011 to consecrate St. Paul’s Anglican Church in the outskirts of Cairo. I also ordained its new priest. It was the first time for me to consecrate a church and ordain its priest at the same time! The spiritual and social work in this area started more than five years ago and now the dream of the people has been fulfilled.

“When I knocked at the door of the church and opened the doors, it was packed with people, adults and children. They were all full of joy! God then spoke to me saying, “Under the veil of darkness I am building my church.” I remembered the verses “behold I make all things new” and “I will build my church and the gates of hell will not overcome it.”

“I know that we are going through a dark tunnel, but Emmanuel, God with us, is walking with us and giving us joy in spite of the darkness of uncertainty.”

As people gather for different reasons on this now memorable date for Egypt, pray for God’s spirit of peace to be upon the nation. In the weeks ahead, please remember in particular the election of the new President and the formation of the new Government in prayer.



To find out more about Egypt, please click here. If you would like to know how you can support or become more involved with CMS Ireland’s Global Partners in Egypt, please contact us.

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