Archbishop of Westminster

Cardinal Vincent Sends Condolences to Coptic Community

Following the attack on the terrorist attack on St Peter's Church in the complex of St Mark's Cathedral in Cairo, during services on Sunday 11 December, which killed at least 25 people, Cardinal Vincent wrote to Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom to express condolences: 

'It was with great sorrow that I learned of the attack, on Sunday, at St Peter’s Coptic Orthodox Church within the complex of St Mark’s Cathedral, in Cairo and also of  the murderous attack in the city, on Friday, where six policemen lost their lives. 

'I pray for the repose of the souls of all those who died, for  those who have been injured, and every family and community affected. These senseless attacks continue to shock the world and all who hold that respect for human life is an essential foundation for every society.

'I assure you and the Coptic Community, of the prayers and condolences of the Catholic Community in England and Wales.'

The Cardinal also sent a message of support to Coptic Orthodox His Holiness Pope Tawadros II, Patriarch of the See of St Mark:

'It was with great sorrow that I learned of the attack, on Sunday, at St Peter’s Coptic Orthodox Church within the complex of St Mark’s Cathedral, in Cairo and also of  the murderous attack in the city, on Friday, where six policemen lost their lives.

'May God grant strength and enduring faith to all who are bereaved, injured and traumatised. May God welcome into His merciful presence all who have died.  May God turn the hearts of all who commit evil to a true understanding of His desire and intention for humanity.

'I assure you, too, of the prayers and condolences of the Catholic Community in England and Wales. We, too, mourn this loss of life.  We pray for the eternal repose of all who have died.'

The Cardinal also sent a message to Ambassador Nasser Kamel, Egyptian Ambassador to the UK reassuring him of his prayers for the victims and for the people of Egypt, saying:

'I would like to assure you that the victims, their families and the wider society are very much in my prayers. I assure you, too, of the prayers and condolences of the Catholic Community in England and Wales.  We, too, mourn this loss of life.  We pray for the eternal repose of all who have died.' 

In addition to these messages, the Cardinal also joined with other leaders of Churches Together in England to issue the following statement about the attacks:

‘We heard with deep sorrow and concern of the attack yesterday on St Peter’s Coptic Orthodox Church within the complex of St Mark’s Cathedral in Cairo as people gathered to worship.  We pray for those who have lost loved ones that they may know God’s comforting presence. We pray too for the nation of Egypt as it mourns. As we prepare once more  to celebrate the coming of Christ, the Prince of Peace, our prayer is that all people of faith in Egypt, Muslims and Christians alike, may be strengthened in their quest for peace  and their rejection of the crude and cruel tactics of the terrorists.’

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