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Samiha and a friend
Samiha (on right) miraculously survived.
Photo: Open Doors USA

When a bomb exploded right next to Samiha Tawfiq Awad, who was attending St. Peter's Church in Cairo on December 11th, 2016, everyone thought she was dead. With half of her face gone, doctors warned her husband, Qalini, that she would not survive. Today, Samiha and Qalini joyfully share that God had other plans. No one can explain how she survived, as doctors had already listed her name as one of the deceased. But miraculously her life was sustained until the doctors finally began administering treatment.

Throughout the bombing, and later in the hospital, Samiha found her greatest strength through Christ's reassuring presence. During the bombing, she remembers little other than a vision of Jesus on the ceiling. He continued to appear to her in the hospital during her lengthy recovery. "I would have been willing to die for Jesus," Samiha testifies. "But the fact that He kept me alive so miraculously tells me that He wants me to live."

As they reflect on that day in December, Samiha and Qalini are faced with their own inner responses. Qalini confesses that it hasn't been easy to forgive the bomber for causing harm to his dear wife. However, whenever struggling with this, Qalini reads over and over in his Bible what Jesus says about forgiving our enemies. On the other hand, Samiha is able to honestly say, "If I would meet the family of the attacker, the only thing I would ask is: 'Do you know Jesus?'"

Country Information

Designation
Persecuted

Population
106,437,241 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Egyptian (99.7), other (0.3)

Religion (%)
Islam (90), Christianity (10)

Leader
President Abdelfattah Said El-Sisi (2014)

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system based on Napoleonic civil and penal law, Islamic religious law, and vestiges of colonial-era laws

Source: World Factbook

Pray for Egypt

Pray on behalf of those who are facing economic and social challenges because of their Christian faith. Ask the Lord to provide for their spiritual and practical needs – further strengthening and emboldening them so they can effectively share the message of the Gospel with others in their communities. May the hearts of those who hear it be open and receptive to the wonderful truths contained in God’s Word.

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