• 13:48
  • Wednesday ,19 September 2012

The regulations of 1957 and 1938

Father Phelopatir Gamiel

Article Of The Day


Wednesday ,19 September 2012

The regulations of 1957 and 1938

The regulation of 1957 is related to the conditions of electing the new pope, while the regulation of 1938 talks about the conditions of divorce and marriage. They are known causing many clamors.

The regulation of 1957 actually violates the tradition of the canon by giving permission to any bishop to be nominated for the papacy, while this is completely prohibited by article XV of the tradition of the canon.

Although our bishops have been always teaching us to respect that tradition rather than any teachings of humans, they are now violating it.

Both regulations of 1957 and 1938 are human made and include a number of serious mistakes. The late pope Shenouda III has refused the regulation of 1938 as it violates the bible as well as the tradition of the canon, and permits the divorce in many conditions. Furthermore, he refused many court verdicts that came based on this regulation. I remember his saying: “No one can compel us to violate the bible!”

Meanwhile, HG Bishop Paula, who has been standing for a long time against the regulation of 1938, is now defending the regulation of 1957 and accepts it despite its mistakes, claiming it brought two of the greatest Popes in the history of the Coptic Orthodox Church. We can't accept that it's the only regulation available or canceling it will cause clashes with the state, as we have already accepted such clash concerning the regulation of 1938 for the sake of our bible and the tradition of the canon.

The problem with the regulation of 1957 is that it allows the bishops to be nominated for the papacy, which is considered spiritual adultery (or a second marriage) by the tradition of the canon, as the bishop is considered married to his diocese. Dear bishops, how come you're committed to the regulation as long as it's applied on the congregation, but ignore it when it hinders your lust in taking an office!

Previously, church had to violate the tradition of the canon in certain circumstances as it had no other chance, but now, monasticism is flourished, and there are many monks who are able to lead the church. Ironically, among the candidates we find abba Bishoy, who is a great teacher of the Coptic Church as well as the tradition of the canon, who used to judge Christian clergy according to that tradition. and Abba Youannis who was a disciple for the late pope Shenouda III.
Dear bishops, remember that heaven will choose among our 3 choices, and I'm pretty sure that both Abba Bishoy and Abba Youannis will be among the final 3 candidates. So, I wonder: What if one of them becomes the new pope? How can he teach us then to respect the tradition of the canon while he violated it to be the pope!