Prayers have been plentiful in the Coptic Orthodox Church these past few weeks. The pleas of the faithful, complete with fasting, sought wisdom and providence in the selection of a new pope. When the lot fell on Bishop Tawadros, there was much contentment.
So for now, let the prayers be simple. Give Tawadros space to prepare himself spiritually before his consecration. Humble him and speak to him, that you might give him the weakness of Christ with the strength of conviction. Allow him to take his office a servant of Copts and Egyptians alike.
Give him time, God. Spare him the immediate crisis posed to test his mettle. Help him to organize his office, his staff, and administrative responsibilities. Surround him with trustworthy people – those who will pray with him and challenge his thinking. May he win the confidence of the family of bishops.
Give him discernment, God. Wisely, he asserts he must not be a political player. Yet the demands of Egypt may challenge his preference. Help him to feed his flock spiritually, that they may apply principles practically. Protect him from the temptation to act when he must wait on you. As he carries the weight of leadership, may he know when to speak and when to stay silent. Work through the whole body, God, not only through its chief shepherd and administrator. May he know he is not the head.
God, bless Egypt through him, and bless him through Egypt. May the nation recognize him as a wise representative of an institution, and treat him accordingly. May he be worthy of them, and may his prayers be effectual for them. In particular may he bless the president; honor and work good through them both.
Give him good health and a sound mind, God. Grant Egypt the same.