Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Friday, July 07, 2006

Egyptians Sue New Church Leader

In Cairo, Heba Saleh of BBC News reported that a group of Coptic Christians in Egypt plan to sue Father Maximus I in order to stop his plans to set up an alternative Orthodox Church in Egypt.

These Copts are supporters of the current Coptic Egyptian leader, Pope Shenouda III and consider Father Maximus an impostor. The opponents view Father Maximus I and his “movement” as something that will only further divide the traditional Coptic Orthodox Church and its members.

According to the article,

“Pope Shenouda expelled Father Maximus from the Ecclesiastical School in the 1970s as a result of his writings. Father Maximus then went to the United States where he was appointed bishop in one of the orthodox churches there.

“Now back in Egypt, he is accusing Pope Shenouda's leadership of being the worst in the church's history, saying that his actions have deepened sectarian tensions with the Muslim majority. Father Maximus is also critical of the Egyptian Church's near-total ban on divorce.

“[E]xperts say Egyptian Copts are deeply conservative and it will be extremely difficult to convince them to leave their ancient mother church,” even though Father Maximus speaks with confidence about the bright future of his new church.”

To read this article in full, click here.


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