On January 16th, 2016 the StMarkDC Board of deacons sent the following email with the subject “Regarding the Current Situation”:
Dear St Mark’s family,
Peace and Grace!
We wish to clarify and give you a summary of the very recent events and we feel it is necessary to be transparent with all of you. We pray that everyone would respond in wisdom to this situation.
At the moment, St. Mark’s is facing an unusual situation. On January 8, 2016, Fr Bishoy Andrawes submitted his request for early retirement from his priestly service at St Mark to His Holiness the Pope and HG Bishop Karas and also to the Board of Deacons due to his health concerns.
Neither His Holiness the Pope nor HG Bishop Karas, nor the Board of Deacons, because of their love and respect for Father Bishoy and his many years of service at St Mark’s, has accepted the request. However, since submitting the request, Fr Bishoy has been unreachable despite many attempts by HH the Pope, HG Bishop Karas, the Priests and Board of deacons of St. Mark’s.
HH Pope Tawadros sent a message to Fr Bishoy inviting his reverence and his wife to meet HH soon in Cairo, to discuss with them their needs, to guide and support them as their father.
HH the Pope and HG Bishop Karas decided to send tomorrow Sunday January 17, a committee from the following Hegomens: Fr Angelos Saad from Mississauga, Canada, Fr Moises Boghdady from the Archdiocese, and Fr Yohanna Naseef from Chicago, IL, to provide support for the church to pass this circumstance peacefully and to gain a full understanding of the situation and to report to HH the Pope.
The Priests and Board of St Mark’s are in continuous communication and will provide all the necessary support to the visiting committee. The Board will do all it can to keep the peace of the church and keep the congregation updated with the situation as it evolves in a transparent manner.
We ask you during this tough time to pray for our beloved church, our Pope, HG Bishop Karas the visiting committee, and for Father Bishoy. We also ask you to pray for the clergy and Board of Deacons, so God can give us wisdom and guidance throughout this process.
The Priests and the Board of the Deacons