On the occassion of the visit of His Holiness Pope Tawadros II
The Mandolay Hotel, Guildford, 16 May 2017
"Your Holiness, I am honoured to stand before you, let alone be invited to speak. As I do so, I carry further fond wishes from this diocese where I serve with Bishop Andrew. I’m also proud to represent the faith and hope of women, acknowledged and hidden, across our churches and across the centuries in both our traditions. Having encountered Oriental Orthodox women in Ethiopia and even Sudan, I have seen first-hand the energy and beauty of your tradition, related not least to the cost of your faithfulness. Coptic Christians are an inspiration to us here in the West.
"Here in Guildford we serve alongside Fr Dawoud Anthony, Dr Albert Attalla and the good people of St Augustine’s Church in Gomshall. In a couple of weeks’ time we shall celebrate Pentecost together, with a shared pilgrimage, a festival of prayer and food, where along with millions of Christians across this country and around the world we shall pray ‘Thy Kingdom Come’. Thank you for the signs of the Kingdom which are evident among your people, not least those who have made their home here. They are so welcome; indeed they are a gift. We treasure their fellowship because we see in their faces - and in your face - the face of our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Hallelujah."