As we continue to pray for victims of Islamic terror in Egypt and around the world, Crux has spoken to a spokesman for the Catholic Church in Egypt about the Palm Sunday bombings that killed at least 46 people at the hands of Islamic State suicide bombers. His views can be read below.
By John L. Allen Jr. and Ines San Martin, April 11, 2017
Father Rafic Greich, a spokesman for the Catholic Church in Egypt, says in the wake of twin bombings at Coptic churches on Palm Sunday that left at least 46 people dead, the ‘real question’ in the country today isn’t security but the kind of education being delivered in mosques, and he has doubts that the ‘religious establishment’ in Egypt is seriously committed to change.
A sad fact of life for Christians in many parts of the world is that the holiest days on their calendar also tend to be peak periods in terms of exposure to lethal assaults. Terrorists who see Christians as targets like to strike on holy days, both for the symbolic value and also, from a practical point of view, because churches tend to be especially full.
Sadly, the latest proof of the point comes from Egypt, where two Coptic Orthodox churches were bombed on Sunday – one in Tanta in the Nile delta, about 75 miles outside Cairo, and another in the historic city of Alexandria.
At latest count, the death toll from those two attacks stood at 46.
The bombing in Alexandria was especially important because it took place at the church where Pope Tawadros II, head of the Coptic Orthodox church, was leading Palm Sunday services. As it happens, he had departed just a few moments before the bomb went off and was unharmed. It was, however, the second attempt on his life in the space of five months.
Read the full interview at Crux.