In the midst of new reports that rival protesters have clashed outside the presidential palace in the Egyptian capital, Cairo, as unrest grows over a controversial draft constitution, Ramez Attallah, the General Director of the Bible Society of Egypt, has sent a second email to supporters regarding the outcome of the first day of demonstrations.

“I do believe that many of your prayers were answered,” he wrote on December 5, 2012. Atallah reported that he was apprehensive about possible violence but the crowds were friendly and, although angry, not hateful. “This was a peaceful demonstration and everyone was being courteous to their neighbors,” he said.

“Two veiled women and a man standing beside me said to me, ‘This is Egypt, veiled and unveiled women, Christians and Muslims, we are all Egyptians and that is the way we want to be!’” Attallah wrote, adding that Christians should pray for God’s overruling in this politically complex situation.”

Read the entire communication here.

Al-Jazeera has reported that two people have been killed as supporters of president Mohamed Morsi attack opposition activists staging a sit-in.

Presbyterian missionaries founded the Bible Society of Egypt and supported the translation of the Bible into the Arabic language. The resulting VanDyck translation is still the most popular translation, funded by the Syrian Mission and the society. The Presbyterian Church also planted and grew the Synod of the Nile into the largest Protestant church in the Middle East today. About 10 million copies of the VanDyck translation have been distributed since 1865. It has been accepted by the Coptic Church and the Protestant churches. 

Learn more about PC(USA) mission in Egypt here. 

The Bible Society of Egypt exists to make the Scriptures available and accessible to all, at an affordable price, in a language people can understand, and in a way that can help each one comprehend the message and effectively apply it. The society is the largest Arabic Bible publishing operation in the world. Publishing the Scripture in a variety of formats and media (print, audio, visual), each product is designed for a particular social, economic, age, and cultural interest group. The operation is trans-denominational and the society is considered the Bible publisher for all the churches of Egypt.

Born and raised in Egypt, Ramez Attallah moved to Canada with his family as a teenager. He came to know Christ through a local church in Canada, and grew in his faith as a student at McGill University where he was involved with Inter-Varsity.  In 1980, Attalah and his wife, Rebecca, left Canada and moved back to his home country of Egypt to minister in the garbage village outside Cairo.  

Learn more about the Bible Society of Egypt here.