Egypt: Muslims Defending Churches, Christians Protecting Mosques

Muslims and Christians working together. . .protecting each other. . .loving each other.

It is part of my dream.

Despite all the recent chaos in Cairo, good things are happening in Egypt. You may only see and hear stories of bloodshed (over 900 killed in the last few weeks) but God is truly working there through Muslim and Christian peacemakers.

Actually, it has been going on for a while.

Perhaps you remember Muslims acting as human shields for Coptic Christians attending Christmas mass in January of 2011 after a Coptic church had been bombed a week earlier by extremists:

Or Christians protecting Muslims during their prayers:

Or during the “Arab Spring”:

I hope you have seen more recent pictures of Muslims protecting a Catholic church during mass in Egypt:

Yes, in spite of the chaos, God is moving in the hearts of people – Muslim and Christian – in Egypt.

I just read today about the potential formation of a non-governmental organization (NGO) called “Muslims for Christians.” It has been touted by Egyptian political writer Mamoun Fandy, who believes the body could work on monitoring and documenting sectarian practices against Christians in Egypt and make “the protection of their rights a duty for every Muslim Egyptian.”

Ali Alsharnoby, an Egyptian journalist and deputy editor, wrote of an experience he had earlier this week when he heard church bells, gunshots, and screams near his home in Cairo. He ran to the church – expecting the worst since the Muslim Brotherhood had burned, attacked, or vandalized about 60 churches, killed Coptic Christians, and looted their shops in recent days.

(Prince Tadros church in Minya, Egypt)

The attacks were carried out by supporters of the Brotherhood in reaction to the brutal break-up of two protest camps in Cairo populated by supporters of the deposed President, Mohammed Morsi.

Here is Alsharnoby’s report:

“. . .thank God, I found only 3 wounded with minor injuries in the hand and the head, wounds that were the result of citizens fighting with Muslim Brotherhood members before people quickly converged on the church, forcing to Brotherhood to retreat and run away.

There were hundreds of Egyptians of all ages. . .I heard a lot of dialogues between Christians and Muslims. I felt the warmth of real cohesion and unity against the new danger, and knew that there is no difference between our needs and destiny because everyone was there to protect the House of God.

I walked among the crowds and heard a Christian man say to a Muslim one: ‘They want to make discord between us and they think we will fight each other because of what they’re doing. Let them come now to see how we stand united. They do not belong to any religion because they come to burn and destroy the House of God.’

The Muslim man replied saying: ‘My brother, we all know this, but even if this was your own home we will all defend it.’

I was very impressed and touched when I saw them hugging and kissing each other after these words.

A few moments later, some phone calls came to some of those present advising that the Brotherhood had attacked the nearby mosque, having despaired of coming back to the church. They threw stones at the mosque, shooting into the air to intimidate people inside.

I found young people of all ages making a beeline as straight as an arrow to the mosque. Many of them were Christians. . .they were running to protect the mosque from the aggressors.

I remembered the defiant words of the Orthodox Pope, uttered the day before, when he told the Muslim Brotherhood and the extremists and terrorists with them:

‘If you burn the churches we will pray with our brothers in the mosques, and if you burn the mosques, Muslims will pray with us in the church, and if you burn them both, we’re all going to pray together in the streets protecting each other.'”

Postscript: One young Egyptian businessman said, “We Muslims offered to protect churches and religious buildings, but our Christian brothers and sisters said: ‘Do not waste your souls, they are so precious to us. We have closed these buildings for now. Together we will rebuild our churches once we have eradicated terrorism.'”

In reaction to the burning of churches, a Muslim girl in Egypt made this drawing. This is the kind of love for one another that many Muslims and Christians are showing toward one another in Egypt. It is not seen or reported by much of the media but God sees it. And I think He smiles.

17 thoughts on “Egypt: Muslims Defending Churches, Christians Protecting Mosques

  1. “no one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite”——-Nelson Mandela

    • Dear Anonymous Muslim Friend,

      Thanks for the Mandela quote and for your faithful reading and replying to these blog posts!

      “Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.” (the apostle John, the book of 1 John, chapter 4, verse 20)

    • Thanks, David.

      “Three things will last forever–faith, hope, and love–and the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13)

    • Jess, yes it is beautiful.

      If I could ask, how did you find my blog?

      God bless you–and in case no one told you today–Jesus loves you!

    • Ashebr, I cannot answer for jihadist radical extremists for why they kill innocent Christians but. . .Jesus warned this would happen to his followers – and in the name of religion, in the name of God:

      “. . .the time is coming when anyone who kills you will think they are offering a service to God.” (John 16:2)

  2. in february 2015 many innocents copts are killed but jesus christ accept them in the heaven and now we christians went to tell for islams we does not change our religion upto death.but you now god passes for us in this earth! please god help us we love peace and prosperity! and lastely i want to say for all christians don.t change your religion until death! be cause this world is not permanent! for all thing god will help us!!! from your ethiopian ethiopian brother ashebr . thank you god our lord , savior ,and createre!!!

    • Ashebr, thanks so much for reading my Ethiopian brother. I too appreciate the courage of the copts that were killed. It takes real courage from God to stay strong to your faith when your head may literally be taken from you in such violence and evil. May God grant us the courage to love our enemies and share Jesus with them. . .to the last moment of our lives. . .to the last breath.

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