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Egypt’s Sisi Becomes First President to Attend Christmas Mass

January 6, 2015

President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, who came to power in June 2014, has become the first Egyptian President to attend Christmas Mass.

In an unusual event, attendees were shown on television cheering and clapping as the President entered Cairo’s Abbasiya Cathedral in an unannounced event.

In a short speech given during the mass, President Sisi said he was there to wish them a Merry Christmas.

President Sisi said that the world is watching at Egypt during these difficult times and urged Egyptians to remain united as ‘one hand.’

Egypt’s President added that ‘we will build the country together…we will love each other,’ and ended his speech congratulating Egypt’s Coptic Community.

Coptic Christmas is held on January 7 each year. The difference in the date is the result of using the Gregorian Calendar.

Comments (15)

  1. Bystanding witness says:

    By the way: does anyone know if he was invited/attended the Catholic Chrismas mass on the 24th of December?

    1. Minymina says:

      He wasn’t invited but a few politicians and actors attended and it was aired on TV.

    2. Bystanding witness says:

      What a shame – I’m sure he would have attended. I believe it is important that the leadership shows unity with all faiths. This is certainly true especially after the heinous crime which took place in Paris. We have to stop tolerating such crimes under the disguise of any religion be it Judaism, Christianity or Islam.
      Thanks for the information :-)!

    3. Minymina says:

      Its not that they didn’t want him there, they just didn’t expect him to come.

    4. Bystanding witness says:

      Oh I didn’t understand you in that way. I know sometimes one doesn’t want to ask because of fear of hearing a “no” – LOL. Politicians and religious leaders are not different in that. But as I always say: It’s
      not that hard to hold out your hand, and it’s not that hard for another person
      to shake it!

    5. Tawfik says:

      Normaly you don’t invite people to come and congratulate you, they do come if they like and then we show them -if it’s the case- how much we are happy and honored that they shared us our feast … but I still can’t answer your question … whether he wanted to keep the surprise till the last minute for the Orthodox community -the majority of the minority-, or it was a just a last minute decision …..

    6. Bystanding witness says:

      I agree with you Tawfiq but in this case I guess it’s a bit different – or so I thought. I understood that it was actually a last minute decision which seems to be confirmed in looking at the initial confusion and disbelief in some faces :-)! You seem to be Egyptian – why don’t you make sure he gets invited or at least let him know how honored you’d be (the Catholic and/or Protestant community) if he’d share a holy celebration with the your community. Easter would be a good opportunity … just saying … Stay safe!

  2. Bystanding withness says:

    Congratulations to the Egyptian Coptic Christians on this holy occasion. And congratulations that the country has finally again a President who wants to build rather than tearing down bridges.

    One thing though is wrong: late Pres Gamal Abdel Nasser laid not only the corner stone to this cathedral in Abbasseya but he also inaugurated it together with the church officials and was present during Christmas mass. Sadat went once … Mubarak never except twice when he was forced by protocol to attend a funeral … Morsi never!

    Please be accurate with this very sensitive part of the recent history; it doesn’t serve you well to “omit” inconvenience facts!

    1. Tawfik says:

      I don’t think you are correct, all people of my age “69” or older are
      sure that it never happened before in the modern history : a President
      attending the Christmass Mass , and here what was on the magazine “la
      croix” today -it’s in French but I can translat it if you want : Par le
      passé, les présidents se limitaient à envoyer des représentants.
      Certains présidents égyptiens – y compris Hosni Moubarak et l’islamiste
      Mohamed Morsi – présentaient leurs vœux de Noël au patriarche au travers
      d’appels téléphoniques de courtoisie, alors que d’autres – comme Gamal
      Abd el Nasser et l’ancien président par intérim Adli Mansour – avaient
      effectué des visites de courtoisie auprès du patriarche au cours des
      jours précédant le Noël copte »

    2. Bystanding witness says:

      Hi Tawfik – I meantime looked it up and the article in “La Croix” is right and wrong and so am I :-). I was wrong when I said that Gamal Abdel Nasser attended a x-mas mass – he attended the inauguration of the Cathedral. “La Croix” is wrong in that Sadat did attend once although I couldn’t find out what the reason was (acc. to people who where in the same mass). That Morsi didn’t go … well it’s not a big loss 😉 and he wouldn’t have known what to do anyway – the same way he doesn’t know why he goes to a mosque! I’ve seen Adli Mansour myself so I’m sure that he attended as stated by “La Croix”. Mr. Mansour is a very decent and humble person and I would have loved to see him become the next President. The new President Sissi – shy as he is … yes, he is just watch his body language 😉 … will hopefully proof in the future that he was the right choice. I wish him and the Egyptian people only the best. They both deserve it. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you!