Traverse City Orthodox Church Reacts To Palm Sunday Church Bombings In Egypt

Here in northern Michigan Orthodox Christians are mourning with those in Egypt after the bombings of two churches on Palm Sunday.

9&10 News’ Megan Woods has details on the local significance of these attacks.

“Our hearts filled with grief, we all suffer when a member of the body of Christ suffers.”

The Palm Sunday bombings at two Coptic Orthodox Churches in Egypt killed more than 40 people and hurt 100 others.

It was also a strike at the core of the faith. The impact is felt around the world including at the Archangel Gabriel Greek Orthodox Church in Traverse City.   

Parish Priest, Father Ciprian Streza, says, “The patriarchs of Alexandria was one of the five first orthodox Christian patriarchs in history, they date their lives all the way back to apostolic times so for us this is significant because you talk about the historic development of the Orthodox Church.”

Word of the attack then quickly spread to the congregation.

Parishioner Dennis Stavros says, “Father interrupted our Palm Sunday luncheon to tell us and things went really silent. Here we were in a service that was a time of celebration because Jesus was coming into Jerusalem and the expectation of good things and the contrast of taking lives violently.”

But they say the people killed died as martyrs and will forever be remembered in their prayers.

Father Streza says, “To us orthodox Christians in the United States it makes us feel even more grateful for the freedom and liberty to worship every Sunday without being afraid of our lives those people truly live out their commitment and their loyalty to the faith in Jesus Christ.”