On Wednesday 27 December 2017, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Dr Ahmad al-Tayyeb Shaykh al-Azhar, led a high level delegation of Al-Azhar Al-Sharif and visited Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria (leader of the Coptic Church & Patriarch of St Mark’s Diocese) at the Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Abbassiya in Cairo.
The Grand Imam extended greetings to Pope Tawadros and the Coptic Christian community on the occasion of Christmas. He was accompanied by Dr Abbas Shoman (Deputy to the Grand Imam), Dr Hamdi Zaqzuq (Secretary to the Egyptian Family House), Dr Shawqi Allam (Grand Mufti of Egypt), Dr Mukhtar Jumuah (Minister of Religious Endowment), Dr Muhammad Mehrsawi (President of Al-Azhar University), Dr Muhyuddin Afifi (Secretary of the Islamic Research Institute) and other senior officials of Al-Azhar Al-Sharif.
The Grand Imam highlighted the positions of Al-Azhar Al-Sharif on the important issues of today including the promotion of peace and coexistence among people of different backgrounds, the countering of violence and extremist narratives, the award-winning project of cohesion ‘the Egyptian Family House’ and the unwavering stance on Jerusalem shared by the Muslims as well as Pope Tawadros and the Coptic Church of Egypt.
Earlier, the Grand Imam sent a letter to Pope Francis of the Vatican and extended greetings on this occasion to the wider Christian community around the world.