American Baptists are urged to pray for their brothers and sisters in Egypt and in Syria during this time of turmoil. The below excerpts are included as a means for reflection and prayer.
Ethicsdaily.com published a piece by Tony Peck, general secretary of the European Baptist Federation, on August 20, 2013. Read more below.
Like many others I have been shocked and saddened by the loss of life in Cairo and elsewhere this past week as the Egyptian military have cracked down on the protesters supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and the ousted President Mursi. Some of the TV pictures have been truly horrifying as they have shown unarmed civilians being gunned down in the streets. I find myself praying that we will not have another situation like that of Syria where civil confilict turns in to civil war.
And I think of my friends in Egypt, some of whom I visited only 18 months ago when a European Baptist Federation (EBF) delegation met the leaders and pastors on the Egyptian Baptist Convention, and also some of the official Evangelical leaders in the country. How different the situation was then, after the Tahrir Square demonstrations and before the elections. I have not managed to make contact with the convention in these past days, so I can only wonder about what is happening with those pastors and churches and commend them in prayer to God’s protection and safe-keeping.
But I am aware there has been a sharp rise in attacks on Christian churches (mainly Coptic) in the past week; some estimates say as many as 40 churches have been attacked. Egypt’s 10 million or so Christians are something of a soft target. As the Al-Jazeera news headline this week put it: “Egypt’s Christians face unprecedented attacks.”
It is understandable that Christians in Egypt (and also in Syria) fear for their religious freedom if radical Islam becomes the controlling ideology of the government. There were already signs that in a society governed by the Muslim Brotherhood hostility to Christians increased, even if not officially sanctioned.
– Read the full story at: http://ethicsdaily.com/praying-for-all-to-live-peacefully-in-egypt-cms-21032#sthash.p9Z9bcQN.dpuf
The prayer below was included in an article written by Terence Ascott, founder and CEO of SAT-7. A version of this article first appeared on the SAT-7 news page. SAT-7 broadcasts satellite television programming that seeks to transform the Middle East through hope in Jesus Christ and is a partner organization of American Baptist International Ministries and BMS World Mission.
I ask for your prayers for this important country – the largest in the Arab world, with the largest Christian community in the Middle East.
Please pray that:
● The current violence will end soon
● The effective rule of law and order will be re-established for the benefit of all citizens
● There will be effective protection of church and other property against attacks by extremists
● Egypt will be governed for the benefit of all its citizens, with people of different persuasions able to live alongside one another peaceably
● Egyptian Christians will have the opportunity to play an increasingly prominent and effective role in addressing the needs of all Egyptians and helping to bring healing and reconciliation in the country.