Leaping Over Australia’s Mountains & Deserts: A Short Tale That Amazed Us

 

 

Australia or Egypt? I love how faith everywhere seems to leap over mountains anywhere!
Australia or Egypt? Either way, no worries!

Dear Friends,
Today, I’d like to share the words of Nevine Iskander, who heads up our office in Australia. Exciting things you all are doing Down Under!
— Nermien Riad

I’m often amazed by the way God works here in Australia.

Here on this huge continent, we’re cut off from each other by deserts and mountains. Facing such obstacles, how can the Coptic Orphans Australia team reach everyone who loves the children of Egypt?

I’ve learned that the answer is: you. Just as we rely on the church servants to ensure the well-being of the orphans, so we rely on you here in Oz to tell your friends and neighbors about this important work for Egypt.

I love the stories I’ve heard of how news about Coptic Orphans travels, spreading by word-of-mouth among Aussies, leaping over deserts and mountains. Here’s one story I heard the other day:

Susan heard about Coptic Orphans through her local chemist, Peter, a Copt.  But it wasn’t through any normal conversation…

Susan told me that on World Prayer Day this year, she was at a meeting dedicated to Egypt. Peter, who couldn’t close his pharmacy to attend, wrote a prayer for Susan to read out in the meeting.

The prayer asked God to be with the orphans and to bless Coptic Orphans’ work in Egypt. That’s how Susan learned about us and, after learning more from Peter, decided to sponsor a child.

The most incredible thing about this story is that Susan and Peter live in a small town in the outskirts of a capital city far from us — an area we wouldn’t normally dream of reaching.

When I hear stories like this, I feel certain that is God working through you, our supporters and ambassadors here in Australia.

As you talk to both Copts and non-Copts, it’s you who explain how each of us can change a child’s life with better education, housing, medical care, and other necessities that break the cycle of poverty.

Your words have made a huge difference for the Australia office by helping us to grow. I think of this now more than ever, as we get closer to Coptic Orphans’ 25th Anniversary Gala in Lilyfield on Nov. 9.

I think of the number of Australians who’ve shown such long-running support for the kids since we founded the Sydney office in 2002. By the grace of God and through your devoted prayers, volunteering, and donations, Coptic Orphans Australia has played a huge role in educating and empowering 30,000 children in Egypt.

The Gala in Lilyfield on Nov. 9 promises to be a wonderful way to mark our years of working together. At the celebration, we’ll be gathering many old and new friends and honoring our many great memories. We’ll also be honoring our Leading by Example Award recipient Nick Kaldas, APM, Deputy Commissioner NSW Police Force, for all that he’s done for our community. I hope you will join us that night as we honor the promise we’ve made to the children of Egypt.

As we approach this anniversary, I know that we wouldn’t have made it this far without you, our beloved Coptic community here in Australia. Thank you, and please help us get the word out about the Gala! By God’s grace, you’re the messenger who allows us to leap over deserts and mountains…

By the grace of God, we are celebrating the 25th Anniversary of Coptic Orphans with Galas in Australia, Canada, and the United States — and with the honored presence of His Holiness Pope Tawadros II in Canada, where he will accept the Leading by Example Award. Tickets to the Nov. 9 Gala in Lilyfield may be purchased online (where you can also get more details) or by contacting me at niskander@copticorphans.org or 02-9787-9777

About Nermien Riad

Nermien Riad founded Coptic Orphans in 1988 after volunteering for an orphanage in Cairo. When she saw that most of the children had living widowed mothers who simply couldn't afford to feed them, she gathered family and friends to sponsor children in Egypt. Today Coptic Orphans works through a network of 400+ church-based volunteers in Egypt, who visit fatherless families in their homes and make sure they get everything they need to unlock their full potential. That way, they don't have to get married off as child brides, work as 10-year old family breadwinners, or go to live at an institutional orphanage.