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UK News

Head of UK Coptic Orthodox Church says people are more connected now than they were before coronavirus

by Tola Mbakwe

The General Bishop of at the Coptic Orthodox Church in the UK believes the coronavirus pandemic has brought about more unity in the nation. 

Archbishop Angaelos told Premier the support people have shown each other mirrors the theme God gave him for the Church in the beginning of the year. 

"It's quite funny that at the beginning of the year, I usually have a theme for the diocese, and the theme was sounding the trumpet from, [the book of] Nehemiah, where if anyone has a problem while they're building the wall, they sound the trumpet. And he says,' rally to us there'. 

"Of course I had no idea that any of this [the coronavirus outbreak] was going to happen. But there's been a lot of sounding the trumpet, there has been a lot of people rallying into each other's help, whether it's people providing for those who need provision, whether it's through digital platforms… there's been a lot of rallying and it's been such a such an encouraging spirit through this darkness to see this light that's always manifest."

Coptic Orthodox Church in the UK has been celebrating Holy Week and will have its Easter service online on Saturday evening. 

Archbishop Angaelos said although this Easter isn't like how most people would prefer it, it's still very special. 

"People still feel very connected, even quite ironically, even more connected now than they would have been.

"So it's going to be different, but there's a different kind of nice about it. Of course, we're all looking forward to seeing each other personally and being in the same space and celebrating as we usually would, but I still think we will… have a really joyous spirit."

Archbishop Angaelos encouraged Christians to be praying with their church groups and also prioritise having a personal prayer time. 

"I know there'll be a lot of things that people will do very creatively, to maintain their spirituality, both individually and collectively. And I think that that, while we do see challenges, we must look beyond them because we don't know how long this will last. But we also know that there will be an end to it, and we want to be stronger and better at the end."

Listen to the full interview with Archbishop Angaelos here: 


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