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Abba Seraphim comments on “Burn a Koran” pastor

Asked to comment on the proposal by Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Church in Gainsville, Florida, to stage a Koran burning to mark the ninth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre, Abba Seraphim observed,

“This is not Christian behaviour and it is an offence to Christians because Pope Shenouda has taught us that remarks which offend the religious sensibilities of others are against Christ’s teachings. Whilst there are legitimate issues we might wish to raise with non-Christians we have to respect the religious beliefs of other people, even if we do not share them. The basis for any meaningful dialogue between faiths must be mutual respect. Nothing can be achieved by insults and this is a deliberate and calculated provocation, intended to offend. How can we reasonably express concerns about the treatment of Christians by Islamic extremists and expect the goodwill and support of Muslims in addressing our concerns, if we condone extremist behaviour among Christians. It it quite apparent that Pastor Jones speaks for himself or at the most a tiny extremist minority. He  does not enjoy the support of any mainstream Christian community and I trust that fair-minded Muslims will see that he is a publicity-seeking pariah whose actions most Christians and decent people utterly deplore.”

Abba Seraphim to speak at Eritrean Conference in USA

Abba Seraphim has accepted an invitation to attend and speak at the 12th Annual Conference of the North American Diocese of the Eritrean Orthodox Church in Stamford, Connecticut. This year’s theme verse is: “The God of heaven will give us success. We his servants will start rebuilding”(Nehemiah II: 20). Under this theme the Diocese of North America will meet for four days of prayer, worship and panel discussions & workshops. On Saturday 24 July, 2010, a special Prayer Vigil for H.H Abune Antonios, Patriarch of the Eritrean Church, will be held. Among the attendees are His Grace Bishop Makarios,  Bishop of the Eritrean Orthodox Church in North America and His Grace Bishop David, General Bishop of the Coptic Church in the United States, with many clergy and the faithful. Abba Seraphim will also deliver an address on “How do fathers serve people who are displaced from their country and live in foreign lands.”

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