His Eminence Archbishop Angaelos, Coptic Orthodox Archbishop of London, and Founder and Director of Refcemi (The Coptic Orthodox Office for Advocacy and Public Policy), invites you to attend an online seminar on 15 February 2021 18:00-19:00 GMT to mark Contemporary Martyrs Day. There will be emphasis placed on solidarity in advocacy as we remember the 21 Libya Martyrs and members of the Coptic Orthodox Church who have paid the ultimate price for their Faith, as well as faith and belief communities suffering FoRB violations around the world.
Speakers will include His Eminence Archbishop Angaelos, Fiona Bruce MP, Prime Minister’s Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief, The Lord Alton of Liverpool, The Rt Revd Philip Mounstephen, Bishop of Truro, Mervyn Thomas CMG, Chair of the UK FoRB Forum, and Gareth Russell, Founder and Director of Jersey Road PR. The seminar will be chaired by Dr Ewelina Ochab, Deputy Director of Refcemi.
Speaking on the significance of this day, Archbishop Angaelos said:
“The Coptic Orthodox Church is in a unique place, through its own experience of persecution across the centuries, to speak for those of all faiths and none who continue to suffer today, and it is for this reason that we will gather to raise awareness and advocate for those who are not in a position to speak for themselves.”
The seminar will be hosted by Refcemi in conjunction with the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of London. Register here
On the 15 February, the Coptic Orthodox Church worldwide commemorates the lives of its contemporary martyrs, while also marking the anniversary of the martyrdom of the 21 executed by ISIS in Libya on 15 February 2015. 20 of the martyrs were Coptic Orthodox Christians from Upper Egypt, with the 21st being a Ghanaian friend of theirs, Matthew.
Contemporary Martyrs Day is an opportunity to give thanks for the lives of those who faithfully practiced their Christian Faith until their last breath, while at the same time raising awareness of the ongoing plight of all those who are persecuted solely on the basis of faith or belief, and advocate for those whose voices are not heard.