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Copts and Poliltical Islam

Islamists dominate Egypt's constituent assembly

Pope Shenouda III | 26 March 2012
Until the late hours of 24 March, the names of the 100-member constituent assembly to draft Egypt’s first post-25 January Revolution were not yet officially announced. As many as 2,078 people are nominated for joining the assembly and it has proved cumbersome for members of the two houses of parliament - the People’s Assembly and Shura Council - to choose among them... More

Brotherhood issues vehement criticism of cabinet, SCAF

Others | 26 March 2012
The Muslim Brotherhood attacked the Supreme Council of Armed Forces and the current cabinet for their management of the country Saturday. In a strongly worded statement, the Brotherhood said the military council's insistence on backing the current cabinet raises suspicions about the integrity of the presidential elections and the referendum on the new constitution. .. More

Muslim Brotherhood plot against Gulf: Dubai police chief

Others | 26 March 2012
The Muslim Brotherhood, the main Islamist force that emerged after the Arab Spring, is plotting to take over Gulf states, Dubai's police chief said in remarks reported on Sunday. Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan said he had his reasons to claim that the "Brotherhood was plotting to change the regimes in the Gulf," in an interview published in the Kuwaiti daily Al-Qabas... More

Egypt's other Christians

Others | 26 March 2012
The vast majority of Egyptian Christians belong to the Coptic Orthodox Church, but there are a number of other Christian denominations with significant numbers of followers in Egypt. Ahram Online takes a look at three of the largest. The Greek Orthodox Church of Alexandria The Greek Orthodox Church is part of the Eastern Orthodox Church, which has many adherents in Eastern Europe... More

Pope Shenouda as a writer

Others | 26 March 2012
Displayed on the shelves of every church bookstore in Egypt is a collection of writings by the late Pope Shenouda III. The covers of his books, which number over a hundred, are all illustrated with an image of St. Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Abbasseya and the pope’s name in the top right corner. Pope Shenouda, who passed away on Saturday at the age of 89 after a long struggle with disease, was an avid writer. He studied English literature and history at Cairo University in the forties, and upon his graduation in 1947, taught in a school, in addition to writing for a number of Coptic publications. He was even a member of the Journalists Syndicate before becoming a monk... More

Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide slams PM Ganzouri online

Others | 23 March 2012
The Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, Mohamed Badie, has slammed interim Prime Minister Kamal El-Ganzouri in a short statement published on his official Facebook page Thursday, wondering why the Ganzouri cabinet continues despite its refusal by parliament. .. More

Holy Synod chooses Bishop Pachomius as acting patriarch

Others | 23 March 2012
Members of the Holy Synod of the Coptic Orthodox Church have unanimously proposed Bishop Pachomius to serve as the church’s acting patriarch until a new pope is elected. At a meeting Thursday, the Holy Synod also agreed to submit Pachomius’ name to the ruling military council, so it can issue an official decree naming him to run church affairs and supervise the papal election... More

In a corner, Muslim Brotherhood mulls presidential darkhorse

Others | 23 March 2012
The leadership of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood will reportedly discuss the possibility of nominating a presidential candidate at a group meeting scheduled for Friday. Some observers say the move is indicative of a political dilemma for Egypt's largest and most influential Islamist group. "The Muslim Brotherhood is stuck,” said one Brotherhood source. “It needs to find an exit from its current dilemma by finding a presidential candidate it can throw its weight behind.".. More

Fearing Islamist takeover of constituent assembly, activists call for protests

Others | 23 March 2012
Several revolutionary forces have called for demonstrations on Friday and Saturday against the formation of a constituent assembly they fear will be primarily composed of Islamists. State-run newspaper Al-Ahram reported on its website Thursday that the Alliance of Egyptian Revolutionaries called for a protest before the High Court of Justice and marches on Saturday to the Cairo International Conference Center located in Nasr City, where the People’s Assembly and Shura Council plan to select the constituent assembly’s members... More

Brotherhood's dismissal of Abouel Fotouh 'against its customs,' says former leader

Others | 23 March 2012
The Muslim Brotherhood’s dismissal of presidential hopeful and former leader Abdel Moneim Abouel Fotouh was “against its customs,” according to one of the group’s former deputy supreme guides. “Abouel Fotouh did not violate the ideology or methodology of the group, but he went against a regulatory decision,” Mohamed Habib said in an interview on the privately owned CBC channel on Wednesday... More

US report chastises Egypt for religious freedom violations

Others | 22 March 2012
An advisory group to the US State Department called on Tuesday for Egypt to be put on a blacklist over religious freedom, saying that the country has failed to guarantee such freedoms and has imposed major restrictions on religious minorities. The US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) in its annual report asked the State Department to add Egypt to the list of “countries of particular concern," which may be subject to sanctions if they do not work to improve religious freedom... More

Beyond Shenouda III

Others | 22 March 2012
It is the end of an era and the beginning of another for Coptic Christians in Egypt, who are now without the patriarch who has headed their church for four decades. Pope Shenouda III, whose death at the age of 88 was announced on Saturday evening, was made patriarch of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Egypt in November 1971... More

Top Muslim sheikhs offer condolences for pope

Others | 22 March 2012
Al-Azhar Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb and Mohamed Badie, supreme guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, on Wednesday visited the Coptic Orthodox Cathedral to offer their condolences for the death of Pope Shenouda III, pope of Alexandria and patriarch of the Saint Mark See. Tayyeb told church leaders that the pope was a close friend and a great pontiff who was always keen on the preservation of the Egyptian national fabric... More

Egyptians flock to funeral of much-loved Pope Shenouda III

Others | 22 March 2012
Hundreds of thousands of Egyptians gathered Tuesday morning at St Mark's Cathedral, in Abbassiya, Cairo for the funeral of much-loved leader of the Coptic Orthodox Church, Pope Shenouda III, who passed away Saturday. Mourners attempted to enter the cathedral grounds as prayers started at 10am, to pay their respects to the spiritual leader whose body lay in an open casket. However, many were prevented from entering the cathedral grounds, which have been shut since the early hours of Tuesday morning following an announcement by the heads of the Coptic Church that the funeral would be invite-only. .. More

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood sets sights on El-Ganzouri govt

Others | 22 March 2012
According to parliamentary sources, a campaign aimed at withdrawing confidence from the incumbent government of Egyptian Prime Minister Kamal El-Ganzouri can be expected next week. The same sources add that various Egyptian political forces are coordinating their positions in hopes of sinking the government via parliamentary channels. El-Ganzouri, the same sources note, utterly failed to win the confidence of Egyptian political parties in his last statement before parliament two weeks ago... More

With tears and crowds, Copts say goodbye to Shenouda

Others | 20 March 2012
Mina Rizq Saad, 21, was slowly making his way out of the cathedral complex just after one o’clock this afternoon. His eye lashes were wet and eyes bloodshot from the tears he had shed upon seeing Pope Shenouda’s coffin leave the church in a white vehicle to his final resting place. “It’s a feeling of sadness you can’t imagine. The earth should feel sad, and the sky should feel joy,” said the young man, who had travelled from Beni Suef governorate that morning to attend the mass prayer at St. Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Cairo... More

Egypt's Copts mourn Pope Shenouda III, who 'safely guided ship' of the Church of St Mark for 40 years

Others | 20 March 2012
Thousands of mourning Coptic Orthodox Christians gathered Saturday evening at Abbassiya Cathedral in Cairo. Groups of hundreds of new comers steadily streamed towards the Orthodox cathedral from all directions, as the night progressed. Women dressed in black, young men on motorcycles, families crowded in automobiles or coming out of the nearby underground metro station and senior citizens leaning on canes or supported by grandchildren poured into the church's grounds, hoping to be in the proximity of the body of Pope Shenouda III, who had been pronounced dead at 5pm earlier in the afternoon. .. More

The last 10 Coptic orthodox Popes

Others | 20 March 2012
Ahram Online takes a quick look back at the last ten patriarchs of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria. 1. Mark VIII: 1797-1809 Mark VIII, the 108th Pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church, inaugurated the cathedral in Azbakia in Cairo, which became the seat of the Coptic Pope until its transfer to Saint Mark's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Abbaseya in 1971. .. More

Pope Shenouda III: Four decades of Coptic history

Others | 20 March 2012
Having been pronounced dead on Saturday afternoon at 88, Pope ShenoudaIII ended an exceptionally hectic tenure that impacted Copts in many ways over more than four decades. Named Coptic pope of Alexandria on 14 November 1971, Shenouda's first ten years in charge of the Coptic papacy were the most eventful of his lengthy stint, due to disputes and disagreements with late president Anwar Sadat over domestic and foreign affairs. .. More

Live Updates: Funeral of Pope Shenouda III at Abbassiya Cathedral

Others | 20 March 2012
Tens of thousands of mourners are gathering Tuesday in front of St Mark's Cathedral in Abbassiya, Cairo, for the funeral of the Coptic Orthodox Church's leader, Pope Shenouda III who died Saturday at the age of 88. The service is due to start at 11am as flocks of Egyptian Christians keep heading to the Cathedral. Not all the mourners, however, will be able to bid farewell and recite prayers from inside the prestigious worship house as only 4,000 invitation holders are allowed to get in... More

Thousands expected to gather for funeral of Pope Shenouda III Tuesday

Others | 19 March 2012
Hundreds of thousands of mourners are expected to gather on Tuesday in front of St. Mark’s Cathedral in Abbasiya, Cairo for the funeral of the Coptic Orthodox Church’s leader, Pope Shenouda III who died Saturday at the age of 88. The service, which is due to start at 11am, will be prayers rather than a full mass, led by Bishop Bakhomious of Beheira. Bishop Bakhomious is currently heading the church for an interim period of two months, until the General Congregation Council of the Coptic Church nominates a successor... More