It was with sorrow that we learned of the death of Dr. Helmy Guirguis on 31 January, after an extended period of ill heath. Dr. Guirguis was a long-standing advocate of oppressed Coptic Christians and the founder of the UK Coptic Association, now known as UK Copts. Both Abba Seraphim and Dr. Guirguis served for a number of years as advisors to SAT7, the first satellite television channel specialising in Christian broadcasts to the Middle East, as well as working together to support Coptic Christians seeking asylum.
Although a highly respected medical practitioner, he was committed to a wide range of religious charities, making a significant contribution of time, energy and personal resources, all of which he gave so generously. For many years he was one of the principal archons of the Coptic community in Birmingham and a devout supporter of the church. He was a man of firm conviction and the highest integrity and his passing is a great loss to the many religious and charitable bodies he actively supported. Abba Seraphim regrets that he will be unable to attend the funeral at Lapworth on 7 February as he is celebrating the Divine Liturgy in Shadwell that morning, before travelling to Bournemouth in the afternoon. He will pray for Dr. Guirguis at the altar and has sent a floral tribute to the funeral inscribed to “A courageous and loyal friend to those in need.”