• 21:37
  • Thursday ,17 January 2019

The Liturgical Protest

Suleiman Shafik

Article Of The Day


Thursday ,17 January 2019

The Liturgical Protest

Following the  scandal  of Zafarana village in Minya, where hundreds of extremists supported by certain agencies or parties prevented some people from holding their prayers. According to article 46 of the Egyptian constitution, many people tired to condemn the victims including bishop Makarious of Minya. Their cheap attempts was supported by an anchor and a statement of the Evangelical Church. Yet, we shouldn t forget about the freedom of worship. 

This reminded me of what was written by  Magdi Mehanna in the site of the civilized dialogue: (The friend Sulaiman Shafiq talks about the liturgy of the protest led by Abba Makarios in the face of the repeated attacks on the Coptic citizens, just for being Copts! The liturgy is worship and prayer, and when they are an expression of protest or objection, we are faced with a work that connects the daily reality with faith and belief, which gives faith its momentum and meaning. The reality is the mirror of faith. It is not strange that Bishop Makarious calls for prayer in protest of the wrong situation supported by the state that allows the criminal to escape even if he is a murderer. This is permitted as long as the victim belongs to the minority!)
The truth is that the inability of the Church Building Law to solve the problem has made the Copts in the villages pray in very small houses like Zafarana, or even in the streets like Forn village in Minya. They also had to held funerals in the streets like Dimshaw Hashim. Here I introduced the concept of Liturgical Protest where people protest by praying which appeared years ago in Latin America. Pope Shenoda started it in Egypt when he decided to lock himself in a cell at the monastery. Bihsop Makarious has taken it to the next level when he invited thousands of angry youth to pray to God in a gathering after the murder of Coptic man and his son by policeman.
It doesn t make sense that the law is applied only on certain people, but in case of insulting Christianity it disappears! Moreover, the law of building churches should be fixed by adding an article to license churches. Those who issued the bad statement of the Evangelical Church should realize that they caused great damage to their credibility.
I salute Bishop Makarious and all Christians who rejected the statement of division. I also salute the people of Zafarana village both Muslims and Christians who will understand that people always have the right to pray. Moreover, the state has to revise its views and methods.