The two bishops and Fr. Greiche warned against pre-judging the situation.
“We have to wait and see what happens next,” said Bishop William. He said the secular and liberal parties are “very young” and may develop and collect more support.
“It is too early to say what these results are going to mean,” added Bishop Aziz.
In Cairo and Alexandria, accusations of electoral malpractice resulted in part of the vote being thrown out and scheduled for a re-vote, Fr. Greiche reported.
The strong Islamist showing left many of the youthful activists who took part in the uprising against former president Hosni Mubarak feeling that their revolution had been hijacked, the Associated Press said.
The new parliament is supposed to select a 100-member panel to draft Egypt’s new constitution. However, the ruling military council has suggested it will set criteria for the choice of 80 parliament members, and has also said that parliament will have no mandate over the formation of a new government.
The next stages of the vote will take place on Dec. 14 and Jan. 3.
In a Dec. 1 interview, Coptic Catholic Patriarch Antonios Naguib told CNA that he remains hopeful that there will still be “a good place” for democratic and civic groups that work to secure a place in society for Egypt’s historic Coptic Christian communities.
It will be “a great problem” if Islamists attain a real majority, but if they have a place in “a moderate and amicable way” then life in Egypt will be “much easier for everybody.”
There are also ruptures between Islamist groups. The Salafists do not want a place for the Muslim Brothers because they view them as too moderate, the patriarch noted.