Bishop Angaelos awarded the O.B.E.

The news that His Grace Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church, has been awarded the O.B.E. in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, has been widely welcomed by those working for reconciliation between faith groups.  In a recent letter, Abba Seraphim wrote, “It is with great pleasure that I congratulate Your Grace on your recent nomination by the Prime Minister for the honour of an OBE in recognition of your services to International Religious Freedom. Your efforts over several years, which have increased in their impact as the situation for Christians in the Middle East and elsewhere has deteriorated so dramatically, are a very necessary witness to our Christian belief in love, forgiveness and reconciliation in the face of such terrible destructive cruelty. In addition to your public testimony, the practical application of our concern, through such bodies as the Asylum Advocacy Committee, with which I have been honoured to be associated since its inception, addresses the reality of human distress and offers compassion and justice to those in need. The widening of our remit to include other religions suffering persecution, rightly demonstrates our belief that God “so loved the world” and that all humanity is precious because of being created in His image. Your example, your vision and your commitment are all worthy of the well-deserved commendation made.”