About a month ago, a group of Christians were traveling by bus to a monastery located in Egypt’s Minya province, about 135 miles south of Cairo. Suddenly, a group of masked attackers came roaring up in pick-up trucks and opened fire on the bus, killing 28 people—some of them children—and wounding at least a dozen others.
Many Egyptian Christian families have been left distressed and fearful by this and other violent attacks on their community and SAT-7 is responding with programs that directly address their needs.
Speak Up, a counselling program for women, reaches out to mothers of traumatized children, offering support and advice. After this recent act of violence, program presenter Layla Farag and her guest Pastor Ezzat Shaker created a special episode called, “To Every Pained Soul,” designed to help parents work through their emotions. The program took live calls from viewers, providing them with an opportunity to share their feelings and ask questions about how to help their children. They examined the public reaction to the attack, explaining that anger, pain, and disillusionment are common responses from people of all religions. Pastor Ezzat encouraged viewers struggling with these feelings to turn to God and to take a peaceful stand against oppression, rather than responding with violence.
A viewer named Eman called in to say: “I am calling this program for the purpose its name implies: to speak up. I want to vent my feelings of anger and disappointment in my country, the country that I refused to leave. My children want to leave Egypt, but I created a group called “Kids in love with Egypt” to show them the beauty of this country.”
Another parent expressed a similar view, saying that, despite the attacks on Christians and her fears for her daughter’s safety, she loves Egypt and will not leave.
One parent shared that she planned not to send her six-year-old son on any trips in the future because she feared for his safety. She added that after seeing a news program on TV about the attack, her son asked if their family would be killed if they say they are Christians. The presenters advised that parents try to limit their children’s exposure to distressing news reports, as these can be difficult for them to process.
Episodes of Speak Up provide a platform for mothers to relate their own stories of overcoming difficulties, and also for discussing the tough questions such as “Why are Christians under attack?” “Why were the victims killed even though they were on their way to church to pray?” and “Are God’s promises of protection only for the soul and not the body?” Pastor Shaker presents a biblical perspective on the attacks against the Christian community, reminding viewers that the Church in Egypt has endured many seasons of opposition and violence…and prevails!
Programs like Speak Up minister to MENA women in a mighty way! Please pray about partnering with us to support these vital broadcasts! Donate today to keep programs like Speak Up broadcasting to our sisters in this region.