Opinion: A Time to Heal



Tue, 09 May 2017 - 10:13 GMT


Tue, 09 May 2017 - 10:13 GMT

A Coptic nun reacts after Palm Sunday bombing- Egypt Today

A Coptic nun reacts after Palm Sunday bombing- Egypt Today

“For once I want to wish my friends and family a happy eid without having to send them condolences”

“Dear God, this is the fifth year in a row that we’ve not been left to celebrate”

“Why have we all become so ugly inside. . . . ”

It’s been one month since the Palm Sunday bombings rocked churches in Tanta and Alexandria.

For weeks after April’s Tanta and Alexandria church bombings, this was the general sentiment on all our social media feeds: overwhelming grief, anguish, disbelief at how any human can unleash so much hurt.

Today marks a full month since the bombing and it’s been a difficult month for us all, and for me, especially, at the office. Being part of a media organization, watching tragedies unfold on your newsroom screen day in day out can all be very jading when you see so much bloodshed and destruction, and the waves of pain they leave behind can often leave one at first raw and then desensitized.

The challenge is always in trying to keep up spirits so that everyone can get on with their work while at the same time coming to terms with all the violence, grief and, I quickly realized, anger.”

I didn’t realize I was carrying around so much pent-up anger until a Coptic colleague walked into the office a few days after the attacks and broke down in tears at my desk.

“Why do they treat us like this? What have we ever done?” she sobbed.

After calming her down I was able to glean that she had been harassed on the underground coming in. A man in a short galabeya and long beard walked up to her and let her know he was happy at the attacks and branded her an apostate. A female passenger in a hijab got up and gave him a piece of her mind, but the damage had been done. The hurt had been inflicted, the knife twisted in the wound.

And that was when I realized that the feeling that was weighing heavy on my heart was actually anger—anger at the non-humans who could possibly believe in such a discriminatory and repulsive ideology. This is not our Islam and perhaps the one consolation is that attacks like these, whether the cowardly verbal abuse shouted on the metro or the violent explosions ripping apart houses of worship and people’s lives, do not have the power to be divisive. The community, regardless of religious faith, stands as one.

As the world struggles to define terrorism, we are all still reeling from the recent wave of brutal attacks that have left the nation grieving but determined to stand together. We may be bruised, but we are healing. And we will never be divided.



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