The BOC + evangelisation + the Copts - Printable Version
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The BOC + evangelisation + the Copts - John Mark - 06-10-2007
I have been thinking recently about the wider issue of evangelizing in the British Isles outside of established Christian groups that is with a general focus for any Christian group trying to gain converts.
With regards to the BOC is there likely to exist an issue of any kind given that the BOC is under the care of the Coptic Patriarchate which traditionally has not focused evangelisation efforts outside of the Coptic population? (at least as far as I am aware, please correct me if I am wrong!)
I should qualify this question really by stating that I understand the Coptic approach in edifying its own people to a very great degree, something which I highly admire and is seen in the love that the Copts have for the Church.
- admin - 06-10-2007
I don't think that there are any major issues, as long as converts to Orthodoxy among the British Orthodox are catechised adequately and as long as we remain faithful to our Orthodox life.
In Africa there is a substantial missionary work among non-Copts and non-Christians and much of the practice of worship is not exactly the same as in Coptic Orthodoxy because the bishops leading the missionary work are aware that Orthodoxy must be at home in some sense in each culture.
And there is mission in Mexico as well, and in many other places.
Here are a few links to websites....
<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="http://www.copticmission.org/">http://www.copticmission.org/</a><!-- m -->
<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="http://www.stmarkcoccleveland.org/mexicotrip07-04.html">http://www.stmarkcoccleveland.org/mexicotrip07-04.html</a><!-- m -->
I am on a Coptic Orthodox mailing list which is devoted to Coptic evangelism in North America, and there seem to be growing numbers who are concerned to be doing evangelism, and though there are issues of course with culture and language it seems to me that Coptic Orthodox want to be doing mission in many places.
Some friends of mine in the US are presently arranging a mission in New York based out of the facilities of the small new monastery there in a rough area of the city.
So I don't think there are special issues relating to the BOC doing evangelism, since more and more Coptic Orthodox are also engaged in the same ministry.
Evangelism - John Charmley - 10-10-2007
Dear John Mark,
Peter has, I hoped, provided a comprehensive answer. Perhaps one might add that although we come under the jurisdiction of Alexandria, we are, of course, an autochthonous British Church, which existed before the agreement with Alexandria, and whose Orthodoxy was recognised by the Coptic Church. In that sense His Holiness showed his usual acuity in recognising that an authentic native Orthodox Church was the ideal vehicle for evangelizing among the non-Egyptians.