Feb 23, 2000
After years of enduring harassment and violence, Egypt’s Christians, the Copts, have seen their situation improve in recent months. The media have become more friendly to Christianity, and plans are being made to purge school textbooks of their hate messages. Certain newspapers have begun to publish articles that try to integrate Christians and their heritage into the Egyptian social and cultural fabric. Muslim religious and political leaders have been visible at Coptic events, attending groundbreaking ceremonies for new churches and the funerals of victims of violence against Christians.
I have just spent the last hour turning on and off light switches, standing in front of heater vents, and opening faucets. After four days without power in freezing weather, I do not take any of these things for granted. There should be a service in the prayer book for occasions such as these: “O God of the burning bush, we praise you for the return of heat and light. O God of streams in the wilderness, we thank you for the gift of flowing water.”