CWN - At least 25 people were killed on December 11 when a bomb exploded in a church adjacent to the Coptic Orthodox cathedral in Cairo.

Egypt’s president and grand mufti condemned the attack, for which no one has claimed responsibility.

Referring to the attack in Cairo, as well as terrorist attacks in Turkey and Somalia, Pope Francis said following his December 11 Angelus address that “we also pray for the victims of some horrible terrorist attacks which have hit various countries in the last few hours.”

“I would like to express a special closeness to my dear brother Pope Tawadros II [the head of the Coptic Orthodox Church] and to his community, and I am praying for the dead and the wounded,” Pope Francis added.

Father Rafic Greiche, a spokesman for the Egyptian Catholic bishops, released a statement:

We are deeply saddened and have cried for what happened to our Orthodox brothers and we share their grief with all our heart. We pray for the speedy recovery of the injured and we present our most sincere condolences to His Holiness Pope Tawadros II. We ask those responsible for security to find the perpetrators of this crime and to stop them. May God save Egypt from all evil.

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Teachings of Christ

“Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you." (Matthew 6:33 ESV)

Protection of the Mother of God

Protected by your coming, O Mother of God, * the faithful people celebrate today with splendor, * and, gazing at your most pure image, * we say with compunction: * "Shield us with your precious veil * and deliver us from all evil * imploring your Son, Christ our God, to save our souls.” (Troparion - Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Today the Virgin stands forth in the Church, * and with the choirs of saints she invisibly prays to God for us. * The Angels worship with the hierarchs, * and the apostles exult with the prophets, * because, in our behalf, the Mother of God entreats the pre-eternal God. (Kontakion - Tone 3)

The Church celebrates the Feast of the Protection of the Mother of God on October 1st.

Exaltation of the Cross

Save Your people, O Lord, and bless Your inheritance; * grant victory to Your Church over her enemies * and protect Your commonwealth by Your Cross. (Troparion - Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Willingly lifted up on the Cross, O Christ God, * bestow Your compassions upon the new commonwealth that bears Your name. * By your power grant joy to Your Church, * granting her victory over her enemies. * May she have your Cross as the weapon of peace * and the invincible ensign of victory. (Kontakion - Tone 4)

The Church celebrates the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross on September 14th.

Random Proverb

"The wage of the righteous leads to life, the gain of the wicked to sin." (Proverbs 10:10 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Therefore let us leave untouched the senseless speculations of the masses and the false doctrines, and turn to the teaching delivered to us in the beginning, let us be temperate and ready for our prayers, persevere in fasting, and fervently implore the All-seeing God not to expose us to temptations, since the Lord has said: 'The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.'

St. Polycarp, Epistle to the Philippians