Last Palm Sunday suicide bombers attacked two churches, killing 49 people. The bomber of the second in Alexandria had aimed for the Members of an ethnic religious group from North Africa but primarily Egypt, where they are the largest Christian denomination in the country. More Pope Tawardos, but guard Naseem Fahmi prevented this. He was killed in the effort. His widow Samira mourns the death of her husband but chooses to forgive.
“I am sure Naseem has been happy to give his life for Christ,” Samira says, dressed in black as she mourns. Last Sunday wasn’t the first time a church was attacked, and Naseem was extra vulnerable because of his work as a guard. “When we talked about this one day…
…he said he would be willing to defend the church with his own blood. Last Sunday he did.”
Naseem was one of the men guarding Saint Mark’s church in Alexandria last Sunday. When the suicide bomber tried to enter the church, Naseem stopped him and asked him to pass through the metal detector first. There the bomber blew himself up. Naseem didn’t survive, but his swift action saved the lives of many others.
“I am proud of what my husband did,” Samira says, “but life has become hard for me after his death. He was everything in my life.”
Then the widow remembers another part of her conversation with her husband: “He told me he knew me and the kids needed him, but he also knew God would take care of us if something might happen.”
“Naseem’s life was at the church, and now his life is in heaven. I know he is in a good place,” says Samira.
She has a loving message for the killer and those in Egypt that think like him:
“I forgive you. And I ask God to forgive you.”
Naseem was a husband and a father of two adult sons. In two months he would have become a grandfather for the first time. He was also a beloved church member and served the church for over 20 years. He died at the age of 54.
*Please pray for Samira as she mourns the loss of her husband and continues to extend the grace and forgiveness of Christ to her persecutors.