Church Reopening & Ordinations in Nottingham

With great joy, the Diocese announces the grand opening of St. Mary & St. George's Church in Nottingham, the ordination of Fr. Anthony as a hegumen and the ordinations of several Deacons and Readers which took place on Saturday 27th December 2014.

Fr. Anthony was ordained as a hegumen by the laying of hands by His Grace Bishop Missael; Fr. Anthony has served the Church of St. Mary & St. George in Nottingham since his ordination in January 2012. 

His Grace was also assisted in the service by the reverend fathers: Fr. Youhanna (John), Fr. Bishoy, Fr. Peter, Fr. Hedra, Fr. John, Fr. Thomas

We thank His Grace Bishop Missael and ask the Lord to keep him in widening the diocese and the appointment of new servants. We pray that the Lord may bless St. Mary & St. George's Church and Fr. Anthony's service for many years to come.

H.G. Bishop Moussa Visit 2014

With the grace of God, His Grace Bishop Missael welcomed His Grace Bishop Moussa to the Coptic Centre in Birmingham from Thursday 25th December until Friday 26th December 2014.

His Grace Bishop Mossa, who is the Bishop of Youth, gave a lecture on five messages we can attain from the name of our Lord Jesus Christ which was followed by a question & answer session on Thursday.

On Friday their Graces prayed the Divine Liturgy followed by another lecture studying the five commandments of St. Paul to the Colossians, duties that all of us should carry out as Christians.

The talks are now available for you to watch and listen to 

"New Creation" Winter Youth Conference 2014

Written by Kristina Saba.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” 2 Corinthians 5:17

From the 28th – 30th November we were graced with the presence of Bishop Paul from Africa. The weekend was filled with thought provoking workshops, and talks led by Bishop Paul himself.

The concept behind the conference was the idea that through Christ, we can be transformed into a whole new being. Although we may see ourselves as a 'hopeless case', it is simple through the power and eyes of God. We were reminded of many stories in the Bible in which seemingly hopeless cases were made into beacons of hope for many. For example, in Acts 16:23-28, Paul and Silias were thrown into prison. They had no control over this themselves, however God stood by them and broke them free with an earthquake.

In the Holy Bible and in church, we are reminded that we are promised the kingdom of God. However many of us often have feelings of sadness, frustration, despair and hopelessness which can occasionally push us away from prayer and the church. To paraphrase His Grace’ words, the devil is deceiving. We all aspire to be holy and holiness is described as a living relationship with Jesus. When we sin, the devil wants us to feel ashamed and embarrassed so that we hide ourselves from God; just as Adam and Eve did. This deception causes our relationship with Christ to suffer, preventing us from reaching this certain state of holiness.

We were reminded of God's faithfulness, and his presence during all our trials and tribulations, and that despite our hopeless feelings, God will never abandon his children. We were also taught the importance of faith, and having the belief that God will never accept defeat over the devil and that he will stand by us and protect us.  

Throughout the conference, we were given countless examples of people who Bishop Paul knew that had experienced these drastic changes in their lives. Each of these stories provided us with valuable lessons to learn and grow from. As the conference drew to an end, Bishop Paul left us with the message that Jesus came to burden our sins and worries. He told us that we were not meant to carry them alone, and that each person should give their worries to God and trust in Him for the earthquake in our lives to change us.

This was the first UKmidcopts conference I attended and my expectations were surpassed a great deal. I avidly look forward to the next and encourage others to come along too! 

The talks and sketch are now available for you to watch and listen to

2014 Apologetics Conference: Introduction to Defending the Faith

Written by Mary Henry.

As Coptic Orthodox Christians in the UK, it is not uncommon for us to feel as strangers in this world.  Awakening us to the great need and hunger this world has for Christ. For this reason, the Diocese, joined by those from as far as Scotland;  took on a beginner’s role in Christian apologetics. With speakers of various ages preparing discussions based on apologetic books they had previously read, we hosted our very first Christian apologetics conference.

The packed weekend began with an introduction to apologetics and evangelism, the differences and similarities between them followed by a Biblical example of how to do it right. Elijah’s your man: bold, wise and discerning.

Before calling it a night we endeavoured to discuss evolution and creation (a nice easy topic before bed). This discussion definitely got people vocalising their opinion on the long debated issue. With the evidence presented, the only conclusions we could possibly draw were that God is in charge and that believing in a creator does not deny the obvious evolution we witness around us. 

After resting the night, we had a gentle start, looking at the ‘Columbo tactic’ in apologising. A mere questioning strategy, to get people thinking. When someone makes a claim that ‘it’s irrational to believe in God’, instead of getting fired up, why not just ask why? What do you find irrational? Often we will find that these claims have no foundation and our simple questioning can push them to search for themselves into the matter. The key is to practice what we preach, to act with love.

With this method in place, we took on answering some questions commonly raised by those questioning the faith. Evil: how can an all good God allow evil? First we must answer: what is evil? Is evil not the mere absence of goodness? This absence of goodness has come through our free will, from our choosing evil (or rather, not choosing good); just as darkness is the absence of light.

So why would God allow free will then? Because otherwise our love for him would not be real, love is a choice.

This brought us on to hell; many people reject the idea of hell because they don’t believe it fits with the all loving Creator and His abundant mercy. What we find however, is that this is often a mentality imputed by our culture. In a culture which satisfies the self, of course we will ere at the idea of an unpleasant hell. Yet in a culture where huge injustice occurs daily, they would find it hard to accept that there is no hell. The truth is that what we accept does not matter. The truth is we cannot pick and choose with God’s word. We must look at what the all loving God says: the same One who wrote about His mercy, wrote about His justice ( a hell). But it is in our hands whether or not we choose it.

We concluded with defending Orthodoxy, which made me appreciate how grateful I am to have been entrusted with the whole truth. Being raised in a church which has handed down the teachings of Christ Himself, from generation to generation.

Being the first of its kind, this conference was a great success, opening our minds and encouraging healthy discussions and debates. Realising the great  need around us, this was a brilliant way to encourage us to take up an active role in apologetics and evangelism. It highlighted the need for us to know our faith well in order to defend it for God’s glory and not our own. In so doing we can attempt to help others to the faith and partake of His eternal joy.

The talks are now available for you to listen to and watch.

Carnival: Coptic Olympics 2014

We thank H.G. Bishop Missael and Fr. Anthony Beshara for their extensive efforts and prayers for this event.

The following are the results (source: copticolympics.org)

  Junior Competition Women’s Competition Men’s Competition Overall Competition
Church Points Position Points Position Points Position Points Position
Birmingham 19 1 13 1 7 2 11 1
Manchester 16 2 13 1 11 1 11 1
Nottingham 4 3 - - 4 3 4 3
Rotherham - - 4 2 4 3 5 2

See www.copticolympics.org for more information on how points are awarded.

The winners for each event are as follows:

Junior Football: Birmingham
Women’s Football: Birmingham
Men’s Football: Rotherham

Junior Basketball: Manchester
Women’s Basketball: Manchester
Men’s Basketball: Manchester

Junior Volleyball: Birmingham
Women’s Volleyball: Manchester
Men’s Volleyball: Manchester

Junior Tennis: Birmingham
Women’s Tennis: Rotherham
Men’s Tennis: N/A

Junior Table Tennis: N/A
Women’s Table Tennis: N/A
Men’s Table Tennis: N/A

Backgammon: N/A
Senior Chess: N/A
Junior Chess: N/A
Darts: N/A

Overall Junior Swimming: Birmingham



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