Egypt has been much in the news this week. While we know that Islam is its majority religion, at least 15% of Egyptians are Christians, mostly belonging to the Coptic Church – one of the oldest Christian communities in the world. Alexandria was the site of the first Christian school for advanced learning (in the second century), and in the third century Christian monasticism began in the Egyptian desert. We remember that Joseph took Mary and the Baby Jesus to Egypt to escape Herod’s murderous intentions until they could go safely to Nazareth. There are Anglican Christians in Egypt, as well; the Diocese of Egypt is part of the Episcopal Church of Jerusalem and the Middle East.
The Most Rev. Mouneer Anis is the Bishop of Egypt. As the pro-democracy protests and the pro-government protests have come into conflict, Bishop Anis issued this statement:
“….I called upon the people of Egypt to give time for the new government to achieve the needed security, justice and democracy. We meet every day at the cathedral to pray for the situation. We thank God because all our churches and institutions are safe.
We, with many other Egyptians, are very sad because of the violence and destruction within our beloved country. Egypt is known in the region as "the mother of the world." Now, the mother is wounded by its own children, which is harder than wounds of outside wars.
Please pray so that God may give wisdom to all those who are in authority to put an end to this unacceptable violence. Pray for the demonstrators in order that they may go back to their homes and wait for the new government to act. Pray for the medical teams who are dealing with the wounded.
Pray especially tomorrow, as people tend to gather and demonstrate on Fridays. Pray for God's protection for all the people of Egypt. We have hope in God who is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.”
Do pray for Egypt, its people and the Church there.
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Family Service this Sunday @10 am – children’s homily, birthday and anniversary prayers, all kids in worship with their parents.
High School Studentswill be meeting with Beth Sciaino on Sunday, Feb. 13 at 11:30 am to discuss plans and directions for the spring. There will be pizza and things to drink. Please RSVP to Beth at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Women’s Book Group is meeting Wednesday, January 16th at 7:30 pm in the Rath House. We’ll be discussing Mothers and Other Liars by Amy Bouret. Come and be part of this fun group.
Our own Dr. Jody will be performing in the opera “Carmen” (sung in English) with the Stony Hill Players in Summit on Feb. 5, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20. Friday and Saturday performances start at 8 pm; Sunday performances at 3 pm. For tickets go to www.stonyhillplayers.org
Flower Memorials – A new chart for donating altar flowers is up on the door in the Narthex. Please be sure to indicate your name, and the name(s of the person(s) you are giving flowers for on the Sunday you wish. If someone's nmae is already on the date you want, by all means add your name also; we can accomodate more than one flower designation on a single Sunday. The cost is $48; make a check to the Church and put “Altar Flowers” in the memo line. Thanks!
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Prayers from the Coptic Liturgy of St. Basil
DEACON: Pray for the safety of the world and of this city of ours and of all cities, districts, islands and monasteries.
CONGREGATION: Lord have mercy. Kirie Eleyson.
PRIEST: And those who dwell therein in God’s faith.
PRIEST: Graciously accord, O Lord, the air of heaven, the fruits of the earth, the waters of the rivers, the seeds, the herbs and the plants of the field this year, bless them.
DEACON: Pray for the air of heaven, the fruits of the earth, the rising of the waters of the rivers, the seeds, the herbs and the plants of the field, that Christ our God may bless them, bring them to perfection in peace without harm, and forgive us our sins.
CONGREGATION: Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy.
PRIEST: Raise them to their measure according to your grace. Give joy to the face of the earth. May its furrows be abundantly watered and its fruits be plentiful. Prepare it for sowing and harvesting. Manage our life as deemed fit. Bless the crown of the year with your goodness for the sake of the poor of your people, the widow, the orphan, the traveler, the stranger, and for the sake of us all who entreat you and seek your holy name. For the eyes of every one wait upon you, for you give them their food in due season. Deal with us according to your goodness, O you who give food to all flesh. Fill our hearts with joy and gladness, that we too, having sufficiency in every thing always, may abound in every good deed.
CONGREGATION: Lord have mercy.