Orthodox Church representative threatens withdrawal from constitution committee

  Al-Masry Al-Youm - 25/11 13 Bishop Paula, who is representing the Orthodox Church within the 50-member committee tasked with amending the constitution, has threatened to withdraw for a second time - in protest against the drafting process. “We were surprised with the decision to drop the word ‘civil country’ without consulting us, which is unacceptable. We also found ...

The role of the church is spiritual, pope says

Al-Masry Al-Youm - 13/6/13 Coptic Pope Tawadros II has stressed the spiritual role of Egypt’s Christian church, as the debate surrounding Copts joining 30 June protests grows. “God is the Lord of history, the adjudicator of history and the leader of the movement of history,” the pope said during a Council of Churches meeting on Tuesday. “And the role ...

Copts will attend 30 June protests

Al-Masry Al-Youm - 13/6/13 Senior leaders in Egypt’s Orthodox Church denominational council have announced they will join opposition groups’ 30 June protests to demand early presidential elections. However, the church establishment had not urged Copts to attend demonstrations, preferring to leave it to each member of the congregations personal convictions. Council member Mohsen George said Copts will participate as ...

Report: Bullets from automatic weapons killed Copts in Khosous

Al-Masry Al-Youm - 8/4/13 Khosous district prosecutors in Qalyubiya Governorate received the initial forensic report on victims of bloody clashes that took place there Friday, which left a Muslim and four Copts dead, and seven others injured. The report said the four Copts were killed by bullets from automatic weapons. The bullets went through the bodies of three ...

Foreign Ministry: 20 Egyptian Copts held in Libya released

Al-Masry Al-Youm Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm 6/3/13  Libya released 20 Egyptian Copts who were being held in the country on charges of proselytizing, said Ali al-Esheiry, foreign deputy minister for consular affairs, attributing their release to the Egyptian Consulate in Benghazi’s efforts. Esheiry said the mission is still working toward the release of 23 other people as part ...

Coptic church gets help from liberal groups after Islamists protest construction

Al-Masry Al-Youm  28/02/2013  After an Islamist attempt to halt construction at an Egyptian Orthodox Church in Qalyubiya earlier this week, political groups visited Coptic leaders to express their support and resolve the dispute. Salafis and Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated protesters had surrounded the Abu Maqar Church in Shubra al-Kheima Monday in an attempt to stop construction on the church's annex, claiming that ...

In constitution debate, Al-Azhar gets high praise from church leaders

Al-Masry Al-Youm 12/07/2012 Coptic Orthodox Church representatives serving on the Constituent Assembly have welcomed a proposal that would enshrine Islam as the state religion but also protect the right of Christians and Jews to follow their religious codes. Article 2 of the new constitution would be much like that of the 1971 Constitution, stating that "Islam is the ...

Grand mufti: Morsy should address Copts’ fears

Al-Masry Al-Youm 27/06/2012 President-elect Mohamed Morsy should address the fears of his Coptic “brothers” and their problems on the ground, Grand Mufti Ali Gomaa said Wednesday. The mufti said Morsy alone would not be able to reform the country or address problems faced by average citizens, and that he needs nationwide support, according to statements published by Dar ...

Church extends voter registration for papal election

Photographed by AFP Al-Masry Al-Youm 21/06/2012 The Coptic Orthodox Church on Wednesday extended the voter registration process for papal elections from June to mid-July. The new pope will succeed Pope Shenouda III, who died on 17 March at the age of 89, after a long struggle with disease. The extension will allow Copts in Russia and Eastern Europe ...

Pope Shenouda undergoes medical examinations in US

Al-Masry Al-Youm Staff 16/01/2012 Pope Shenouda III, the head of the Coptic Orthodox Church, underwent medical examinations on his heart and kidneys at Ohio’s Cleveland Clinic in the United States on Monday. “Doctors will assess the pope’s state of health over several hours after undergoing the medical examination,” a church source told Al-Masry Al-Youm. Speaking on condition of anonymity, ...

Egyptian churches embrace Al-Azhar basic freedoms document

Al-Masry Al-Youm Staff 12/01/2012 Egypt's three major churches and the Maspero Youth Union have come out in support of Al-Azhar's proposed basic freedoms document, which lays out a basic framework for respecting freedom of belief and expression in Egypt. The Orthodox, Catholic and Evangelical churches all support the document, and the Maspero Youth Union said that while ...

Pope Shenouda to invite Salafis to attend Christmas

Al-Masry Al-Youm Staff 28/12/2011 The Coptic Orthodox Church will send out invitations to presidential hopefuls and all political parties, including Salafi ones, to attend the Christmas holy mass on 7 January, a papal source told Al-Masry Al-Youm. The source said that Pope Shenouda III insisted on inviting both Muslim and Coptic Egyptians to the celebration. The same source added ...

Coptic Church to support independents in run-off Elections

Ragab Ramadan 04/12/2011 The Coptic Orthodox Church will support independent candidates in Alexandria against Islamist parties in the run-offs for the first phase of the parliamentary elections, according to Kamil Seddiq Sawiris, secretary of the church's Coptic Ecclesiastical Council. The first phase began on 28 November and has seen the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party and the ...

Church not directing Copts to vote for certain candidates, says bishop

Emad Khalil 26/11/2011 The Coptic Orthodox Church said Saturday it is not specifying a list of candidates for Coptic adherents to vote for in the upcoming parliamentary elections and is merely calling on Copts to vote. Recent rumors that the church is directing Copts to vote for certain candidates are not true, Bishop Morkos, a member of the ...

Alexandria churches to promote Coptic participation in Elections

07/11/2011 Orthodox churches in the coastal city of Alexandria have launched an awareness campaign aiming to encourage Coptic Christians to take part in the parliamentary elections scheduled to begin on 28 November. The churches will implement their campaign through what they are calling "citizenship committees" formed by activists and young volunteers, which will urge Copts to become ...

Live Updates: Protesters march from Coptic Hospital to Cathedral

10/10/2011 1:01 am: The funeral service is over. 12:56 am: The priest announces that all of the martyrs will be buried together in a collective Christian cemetary in 6 October City. A commotion errupts as the coffins are taken from the cathedral and crying mourners struggle to touch them. 12:40 am: The cathedral is full of mourners. The ...

Copts demanding right to divorce will collectively leave Church

Emad Khalil Yomna Mokhtar 13/08/2011 The Right to Life Movement, a Coptic group, said a large number of its members will collectively leave the Coptic Orthodox Church, while retaining their Christianity, in response to the Church's refusal to permit divorce and second marriages except in cases of adultery. A senior bishop, who asked not to be named, downplayed the ...

Copts alarmed by rise in young female converts to Islam

Photographed by Mohamed Abdel Ghany

Alastair Beach 08/08/2011 The video footage is blurred and shaky, but there is no mistaking the identity of the two young girls. Sitting in what appears to be a busy city square and speaking above a cacophony of car horns, Christine and Nancy Fathy explain to the camera why they have run away from their families. “I left ...

Egyptian Women’s legal center demands personal status law for Copts

Yomna Mokhtar 02/07/2011 The Center for Egyptian Women's Legal Assistance (CEWLA) announced support for Copts' demand for a personal status law for non-Muslims. Such a law would deal with issues of marriage and divorce separately from church regulations. The center said such as law is necessary in light of sectarian violence triggered when Copts do not get ...

Sectarian violence kills 2 in Shubra

27/06/2011 Sectarian clashes between a number of Muslims and Coptic Christians resurfaced in the Fateh district of Shubra al-Kheima on Monday, after two Muslims were shot and killed by a Copt on Sunday. Security forces surrounded the area, imposed a security cordon around churches in the area and arrested seven Muslims and Copts carrying weapons. In ...

Egyptian churches consider response for places of worship draft Bill

14/06/2011 Egypt’s Christian Orthodox, evangelical and Catholic denominations plan to hold a meeting to draw up a response to the draft law on places of worship. Previously, they had expressed their rejection of many features of the bill. The Orthodox Church earlier rejected nine features of the bill, while the other two denominations continue to mull the ...