Pope Tawadros II, Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of Saint Mark Episcopate, gave his first sermon in months today. Pope Tawadros hasn’t been able to give sermons in almost ten weeks due to the unstable political situation in Egypt since the second wave of revolution, on June 30th, 2013.
In his sermon, Pope Tawadros II congratulated the Coptic community who celebrated the Coptic New Year, in honor of the Christian martyrs under the Roman Empire.
On this occasion, Pope Tawadros II gathered the Egyptian Coptic community in the Cathedral of Al-Abasseya, under tight security measures. Security forces and military cars surrounded the gates of the church, while policemen, church scouts and bloodhounds were present inside the church, Youm7 newspaper reported.
The Coptic community has been feeling threatened recently, especially after the series of deadly attack on churches over the past weeks. Several heritage churches and monasteries were stormed and burnt down in different governorates, as well as violent attacks on Christian people houses and shops.
Interestingly, the Coptic New Year symbolizes the revival of memory of all Christian martyrs around the world. In year 284, Diocletian became the emperor of Rome. Christian masses were prosecuted under his rule,that year marked the birth of the Coptic annual calendar