Fairfax, VA (PRWEB) July 29, 2014
His Holiness Pope Tawadros II on July 12 welcomed 21 volunteers participating in Coptic Orphans' Serve to Learn program, commending them for spending three weeks teaching children in the towns of Barsha and Abnoub in Middle Egypt.
"His Holiness Pope Tawadros II made us feel blessed by meeting with our team of Serve to Learn volunteers in St. Mark's Cathedral in Cairo," said Coptic Orphans founder and Executive Director Nermien Riad, who attended the meeting.
"His Holiness Pope Tawadros II was incredibly warm and kind to us," said Serve to Learn volunteer Mirelle Botros, 19, of Dallas, TX. "It was exciting to hear him encourage us and other Copts around the world to visit Egypt and serve the children."
"His Holiness Pope Tawadros II urged Copts living abroad to come to Egypt as volunteers, serving Egypt's children and families," Riad said. "This is exciting for us at Coptic Orphans, because we believe that a strong and vibrant spirit of volunteerism can connect all Copts, benefitting communities, families, and the Church in Egypt and all over the world."
"Serve to Learn shows that young Copts can benefit Egypt's communities by volunteering, while becoming more strongly tied to their Coptic faith and cultural heritage," Riad said.
Coptic Orphans, which serves thousands of children across Egypt, has run Serve to Learn for over a decade. For this year's July 4-26 session, volunteers were split between Barsha (150m south of Cairo on the Nile) and Abnoub (also south of Cairo, northwest of Assiut). Serve to Learn volunteers teach basic English skills to children while staying with the local diocese.
His Holiness Pope Tawadros II was chosen to lead the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, which has 18 million members worldwide, on Nov. 4, 2012. The Copts, Egypt's indigenous Christian community, have a faith and way of life stretching back to the first century AD. They are now a minority of Egypt's population. An estimated 1.5-2.5 million Copts now live in the United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere in the world.
Coptic Orphans, an award-winning Christian development organization, this year celebrates 25 years of work that has empowered 30,000 children in Egypt. Coptic Orphans focuses on education, empowerment, and tolerance. To learn more about Coptic Orphans, please visit http://www.copticorphans.org.