In Unity, Without Division, Revealing the Hidden – A Petition to the Coptic Patriarchate

Change – 20/5/2020 – Mark Mansour 

Click here to read and sign the Petition 

Dear Coptic Brothers and sisters,

As you may be aware His Holiness Pope Tawadros received a vast quantity of emails last year raising concern about the conduct and decisions Made By bishop Daniel. Some of those complaints raised extremely serious questions about loans, purchase, and sale of properties, and the property at Caringbah proposed to be the headquarters for the Sydney Coptic Diocese. {This property has now been sold resulting in a loss of millions of dollars for the diocese}

His Holiness, late last year rightly sent a delegation of Bishops to independently investigate the veracity of those complaints and prepare a detailed report for his consideration. At the same time he instructed Bishop Daniel to remain in Egypt. Whilst in Australia it is understood the delegation of three Bishops received over 600 additional complaints raising numerous matters, some of which were private and confidential.

As a consequence of the report received by His Holiness, he issued a decree appointing His Eminence Metropolitan Tadros as Papal Envoy responsible for the Sydney Diocese. His Eminence was chartered with performing a number of tasks including addressing ecclesiastical matters such as clergy removing their clerical attire to celebrate occasions such as birthdays, shaving beards, and the ordination of Part-time priests by Bishop Daniel.

Another serious matter related to an alleged phone call between the husband of Gihan Kerollos and the Bishop immediately prior to her murder. It is understood the Bishop denies he spoke to Mourad that night and asserts it was a “pocket dial” that lasted 20 minutes without his knowledge.

In addition, His Eminence was chartered with amending the constitution so the Bishop is no longer the sole Trustee of the Diocese. He was also was chartered with ascertaining the financial position of the Diocese, ascertaining the current debt and the expenditure or otherwise of multimillion-dollar loans.

As it stands our Diocese is in a dire financial position, a newly appointed team of accountants is attempting to decipher the complex accounting arrangement utilized under the watch of Bishop Daniel. It is understood the newly appointed team of accountants are still attempting to ascertain what happened to $18.3M Loan and almost $15M in a charity fund set up under the watch of Bishop Daniel.

Sadly Bishop Daniel breached numerous provisions of the constitution, e.g he did not obtain the consent of His Holiness for the multi-million dollar loans.

When questioned by His Holiness it is understood Bishop Daniel replied with words to the effect, “I do not understand financial matters and I did not have anything to do with the purchase and sale of numerous properties. Simon would put the documents in front of me and I just signed them”. Worthy to note that Mr. Simon Michail, rejected the response by Bishop Daniel. The Bishop’s response sought to lay all blame at his feet.

There were numerous other matters raised in a complaint to his Holiness, such as the establishment of a legal slush fund, the arrest of a Coptic Sister during the visit of his Holiness in 2017. It must be clarified this Young Lady committed no crime, was never taken to a police station, or arrested, she was removed from the forum to prevent her from complaining about Bishop Daniel to His Holiness. Other complaints related to Clerical council matters, “alleged donations” to the diocese, the fabrication of an unlawful constitution for St Karas Parish.

The status quo is Bishop Daniel is in Egypt under instruction by his Holiness and the NSW Police are currently conducting a number of investigations including fraud and the alleged phone call by Bishop Daniel.

It must be said that there has been peace and harmony within the diocese since the confinement of Bishop Daniel in Egypt.

Sadly there are a number of agitators in the community who are attempting to facilitate the return of Bishop Daniel for some unknown reasons. In some instances, they have publicly made comments which question the decree and decisions made by his Holiness and His Eminence Metropolitan Tadros. We object to the actions of this small group of people and the few priests supporting them. There is no doubt their motivation is “self-serving”.

This group of people have also started a number of petitions where they misrepresent the facts by attempting to convince his Holiness they represent the majority of the Sydney Coptic Community. We abhor any attempts to deceive his Holiness. These people speak for themselves and not the community or our Youth.

The petition started FIVE months ago states “We the Australian Humble Copts (the majority of the copts in Australia) plead with your Holiness to stop the nonsense of the righteous copts ” as they claim to be”.

The so-called Humble Copts do NOT in any way represent or speak for the approximately 70,000 Copts in our diocese.

The second petition was started by the same person from EPPING 2121 NSW. On this occasion the individual has changed his approach by stating-: “We the youth and congregation of the Coptic Orthodox Church within the Diocese of Sydney kindly request the return of our beloved father HG Bishop Anba Daniel back to his seat as chosen by God. His Diocese, the Priests, congregation and youth, are all in desperate need of him and need him back home where he belongs to lead and guide us. As taught to us from a young age that a Bishop is assigned to his seat until death we are now struggling to explain this very notion to the children we teach”.

Again this person and his group do NOT represent the Youth, Priests or congregation and they most certainly have not consulted the community nor spoken to them. In fact when the Bishop was here, he had no relationship with the Youth and they had absolutely no interaction with Bishop Daniel.

The first petition over a five-month period managed to obtain a total of 325 signatures.
On their second attempt, they have obtained less than 150 signatures. Their effort is a far cry from the 70,000 of Copts in the diocese and confirms their misrepresentation and attempt to deceive his Holiness.

The fact is these people speak for themselves and no one else. It’s apparent they have their own motives and agenda for Bishop Daniel to return. There is a lot of speculation as to the true reasons these people want the Bishop returned, one motive alludes to joint ventures these people have apparently commenced with Bishop Daniel abroad and in Sudan.

To provide his Holiness with a true picture of the facts we ask our brothers and sisters in the Coptic community who object to the misrepresentations by this group to sign this petition confirming they have total faith in the decisions and actions of His Holiness Pope Tawadros II and His Eminence Metropolitan Tadros and they DO NOT support the return of Bishop Daniel.