Christian leaders in Egypt have said that multitudes are coming to Christ despite the church bombings and persecution believers suffer, noting that people in the West often don't see or hear about such "heavenly" news.
The Rev. Sameh Hanna, associate pastor at the Evangelical Church in Cairo, was among a number of believers to speak with Premier on Monday, marking the first year since the Palm Sunday twin bombings in the country that left 45 people dead and 126 injured.
"The mood is very, very good amongst Christians who are living in Egypt. Not because the situation is good or bad — that is not the reason. We have two kinds of news — earthly news, which is very ugly, very discouraging and I think in the West, you get only the earthly news — a bombing here or there," Hanna said.
"But there is heavenly news. We know what is going on spiritually. We see things that not everybody is seeing. We see things you are not hearing. We see the multitude coming to the knowledge of Christ from every background, so this brings joy to us."
The Rev. Andrea Zaki Stephanous, president of the Protestant Community of Egypt, added that believers know further attacks by the Islamic State terror group or other extremists can happen at church.
"When security knows I'm going to a certain church there will be double security, but you never know. You can expect at any moment that someone will come with a bomb and create a massacre. So every day we trust God and we go," he said.
Fr. Kyrillos Fathy was at St. Mark's Coptic Church, one of the houses of worship that was bombed last year, and said that he narrowly escaped crossing paths with the suicide bomber during the attack.
"Even though the incident was very terrible and it left us emotionally vulnerable, we believe in the Bible and in the verse in the Bible that says everything works out for the good," Fathy shared.
He explained that the church was full for service after the attack on Palm Sunday despite the horror the people had suffered through.
Videos from April 2017 following the bombings showcased the spiritual strength of Coptic believers who were recorded enthusiastically chanting the Nicene Creed in church.
David Curry, President of Open Door USA, which advocates for the persecuted Church around the world, told The Christian Post at the time that despite the pain and shock, Christian believers are holding tight to their faith.
"The Copts are an inspiring group that has been under so much pressure for their faith and yet they are standing strong and really showing the love of Jesus in the face of great opposition," Curry said.
He told CP that most Egyptians "want to be a pluralistic society in the sense of allowing Copts and others to remain ... but I think you're going to have pressure from Islamic fundamentalists. You're going to have continued attacks."