The meeting was held at The Virgin Mary and St Mina’s church On 6th July 2002
Fathers Bishoy , Mikhail Ibrahim and Philopateer celebrated the Holy Mass. 35 members attended.
Dr Raafat Saeed gave a fascinating talk on God’s hand or volcano.
The author of a recently published book argued that a volcano that erupted in the area could have explained the ten plagues in the old testament. Raafat noted the different sequence a volcano could cause to the record of events in the scriptures. The book also failed to explain why the plagues affected the Egyptians and not the Israelites. Also, Moses was able to terminate each plague contrary to an uncontrollable volcano. What concluded the debate was another recently published book that puts the date of the volcano at least a hundred years before the plague. Raafat concluded that the Holy Scriptures have yet again stood the test of scientific interrogation
Dr Lila Fareed gave an entertaining talk on the History of Coptic journalism over the past 100 years. She explained that the Coptic journals express the identity of the Copts and link them to their homeland. However, Coptic journalism faced many obstacles including funding, failure to attract famous authors and its tendency to avoid critical style in articles. Coptic journalism started with Pope Cyril IV in 1860. He welcomed the first printing machine with the same chant that is given to the bishops as they enter the church. He said he would have danced before it as David danced before the tabernacle. He had the foresight to see the importance of printed material. Several Coptic periodicals were stopped by successive governments, as they were felt to be politically incorrect. Watani has proved to be resilient and has lasted for the last 40 years. Now it also appears in English for the benefit for the second generation of Copts.
Dr Nagy Nazer presented a range of challenging ideas on how to establish the identity of Coptic doctors in Britain. This sparked off a lively debate. It was noted that fundraising events to help various charities can bring members of the society closer as well as providing a service to the community and raising the profile of the CMS. Retirement as well as graduation parties could serve an important social role.