Pope Tawadros II in Japan - Press photo
CAIRO – 27 December 2017: Coptic Church spokesman Boulos Halim said that an Islamic delegation headed by Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Ahmed al-Tayeb will extend their greetings to Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria on Wednesday.
The delegation will head to the Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Abbassia to offer their greetings as Egypt celebrates Christmas.
The delegation includes Egypt’s Grand Mufti Shawki Allam, Minister of Awqaf (endowments) Mokhtar Gomaa and a number of Al-Azhar scholars.
This is an Egyptian tradition where all religious institutions greet each other in their celebrations.
Masses are often attended by public figures, diplomats, executives, as well as religious and security officials. During the celebrations time, cars are not allowed to park in the areas surrounding churches, and inspection gates are installed at churches' entrances.
During Christmas masses, Egyptian priests always include Egypt and Egyptians in their prayers, wishing them prosperity, security and safety.
Although the majority of Egyptian Christians are Orthodox, and thus celebrate on January 7, there are many Christian citizens in Egypt who celebrate Christmas on December 24, holding masses in the Catholic churches on December 24, 25.