from Sydney :
Bishop Wissa Explains our responsibility toward
our people in Egypt.
teaches us to be strong and always witness to the truth and
never it had been weak or passive. The marches conducted
in Sydney and Washington were executed in a very peaceful and
Their aim is first, to create public
awareness to the world of what is happening to the Copts in Egypt;
secondly, to make it clear to the Egyptian Government that we will not
accept such violations of our human rights; and thirdly, to call against
the continues injustice directed at the Copts.
We are not protesting against
something that we had and was lost and we are not calling for
independence or freedom. We are not advocating an international military
interference nor we are praying for an eleventh plague to stick
The Copts are an integral part of
Egypt , and indeed they are entitled to be treated on an equal level as
the others. Do the authorities differentiate between Egyptians on the
basis of their religion? Thatís the question we are raising to the
world and the human rights organizations since our own leaders keep
turning a blind eye and refuse to listen to us.
the school of thought that believes of marches and protests as
anti-Christian acts, I would like to make some points clear:
When Jesus was struck on the face, he asked his offender, " why did
you strike me?". Isn't that a protest?
When the martyrs faced the Roman Emperors, they protested openly against
them. They were strong in their faith and in declaring the truth to
their tyrants. Not only that but they cursed the Emperors, their
followers and their gods. Isnít that a protest? When a 12 year old
child stands in front of a great Emperor telling him that what he is
doing is wrong and that his gods are nothing but human made mute
statues. Isnít that a protest?
When king Nebuchadnezzar told the 3 men to worship the gold image, the
rebuked the king and protested against him saying, Ď Let it be known
to you O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor we will worship the
gold image which you have set up.í (Daniel 3:18) Isn't that a protest?
When the Jews had arrested St. Paul in the temple, he told the commander
that he wanted to speak out and defend himself, Ď Brethren and
fathers, hear my defense before you now.í (Acts 22:1) Isnít that a
protest. Also when he had finished his long speech and was about to be
scourged, he said to the centurion, Ď Is it lawful for you to scourge
a man who is a Roman, and uncondemned?í (Acts 22:25) Isnít that
defending himself, questioning his rights as a citizen, protesting
against injustice? !!!
If someone had broken into your house, killed your son, raped your
daughter and kidnapped your wife, what will you do? Will you go inside
your room and just pray?!! Or will you defend your family and their
rights till the last breath !!
Anba Wissa had referred to this mentality as
the Ď sick religious conceptí
and said regarding this issue:
ď If someone strikes me on the face, I can
accept it because the act was
against me personally, but when he strikes my child, how can I not say
do anything about it? This is my child which God had granted me
care of, to serve, and to be my full responsibility in every way. If I
don't meet my duties towards that child as a father, what will I say to
in the last day? Will I tell him that I just prayed for him and that is
it?!! I am afraid that will not be good enough and the blood of that
will be on me. Of course, prayer is the number one
solution but we must do our duties so God can bless and help us,
for he said to the people to roll the stone from Lazarus tomb. Do you
think that God was not able to make Lazarus rise from the dead without
the rolling of the stone?!! The martyrs of El-Kosheh are my sons and
daughters and they are my responsibility.
I can not see them in such a
trauma and not do anything about it. You here,
must raise up your voices and keep on calling out on behalf of your
brethren in Egypt, because they can not. Your
voices have been heard very clearly in Egypt and you must continue and
never give up. You are their hope after God. God bless you all.Ē