Friday Prayers for Egypt: Old and New

Flag Cross Quran

God,

Egypt served up surprises this week, of both old and new variety. A new government is now an old practice, and some new politicians are decidedly old. But age, experience, and freshness matter little compared to competency and vision. God, give them the latter.

The new government is headed by a technocrat from the old regime. Three years beyond the 2011 revolution against Mubarak, there is little outrage. The new prime minister was the successful manager of one of the largest construction firms in the Middle East, so many people are hoping he gets similar results with the government.

But God, this is now the sixth government since the revolution began. Egypt needs stability and expertise, but it is uncertain if even this one will last. Presidential elections will be held shortly and parliamentary after that; another new government may soon be necessary. But if they are caretakers, replacing previous caretakers, well, help Egypt to care.

For Egypt is fixated not on the government, but the speculation whether its defense minister will run for president. Sisi has still not declared.

For each and every minister, God, burden them with a sense of responsibility to their nation. Whatever time you have for them, help them to work to the fullest of their ability. Help them to motivate their bureaucracies to do the same. Help them to root out any corruption they find.

For an old auditor is releasing new accusations. A veteran judge, the head of the Central Auditing Agency was appointed by Morsi but only new makes public his findings. They mostly exonerate the recent administration, but scathe the institutions of state. Sentiment is divided if he is serving the public trust, or undermining it.

God, only you know his heart, but his figures can be analyzed. His position is of paramount importance in this transitional phase. Clean the state with an impartial head of an impartial institution. May transparency judge between disputants, with men of integrity courageously empowered to hold entrenched interests accountable. But where there is manipulation, God, expose it.

But recently in civil institutions, perhaps you have now chosen a time of honor. A leading secular party voted in the nation’s first woman and first Christian head. Recently the Doctors’ Syndicate did the same, and this week she retracted her earlier resignation. Both face deep internal challenges, but were awarded the validation of their peers. Both are veteran leftist activists, but their leadership is entirely new.

With them, God, make all things new in their respective spheres. Give them a steadfastness of spirit to unite diverse opinions and do what is right for their constituencies. Help them to develop their institutions rather than raise their profiles. Give them humility amidst their honor, that they may diligently serve. And help them to have cooperative colleagues dedicated to the success of all, and of Egypt.

God, you are the ancient of days who is ever present. You guided the Pharaohs as you guided the revolutionaries. Guide now the politicians to whom you have entrusted Egypt. Guide the people to judge well between them.

Renew Egypt, God. Age her in wisdom. Shape her in fulfillment of your everlasting principles.

Amen.

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