Thursday 13 September 2012

Press Release: The Coptic Orthodox Church announces Papal Selection dates

For immediate use
Date: 13 Sep 2012
The Coptic Orthodox Church Centre UK
Media and Public Relations Office

The new pope of The Coptic Orthodox Church will be chosen on 2 December 2012 as announced by the Holy Synod and Nominations Committee on Wednesday 12 September 2012. The official list of Papal nominees and final dates that will bring the Papal selection process to a close was also announced.

The Holy Synod and Nominations Committee of the Coptic Orthodox Church have announced that the new pope to succeed His Holiness the late Pope Shenouda III, the 117th Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of All Africa on the holy Apostolic See of Saint Mark, will be chosen on 2 December 2012. Pope Shenouda III departed on 17th March 2012 after forty-one years of papacy.

The Papal Selection Timeline as announced on Wednesday 12 September 2012 is as follows:

  • 14 September- Final papal nominations announced by nominations committee
  • 15-30 September - Period for challenges to nominations by voters
  • 1-3 October - Church-wide fast for the coming stage of the process
  • 3 October - Nominations committee commences deliberations and creates a shortlist of 5-7 candidates for papal election
  • 19-21 November - Church-wide fast before Papal election
  • 24 November - Papal election
  • 26-29 November - Church-wide fast preceding Altar Ballot
  • 2 December - Liturgical service at the Grand Cathedral of St Mark in which the Altar Ballot will take place and the new pope will be chosen.

The Nominations Committee will formally issue the final list of Papal Candidates on Friday 14 September, and they are:

  • Metropolitan Bishoy of Damietta
  • Bishop Youannes
  • Bishop Rafael
  • Bishop Pafnotious of Samalout
  • Bishop Boutros
  • Bishop Tawadros
  • Bishop Kyrollos of Milan
  • Father Rafael Ava-Mina
  • Father Maximos El-Antony
  • Father Shenouda Anba-Bishoy
  • Father Pakhomious El-Souriany
  • Father Daniel El-Souriani
  • Father Anastasi El-Samuel
  • Father Bishoy Anba-Paula
  • Father Saweris Anba-Paula
  • Father Seraphim El-Souriany
  • Father Pigol Anba-Bishoy
His Grace Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom who has issued a detailed explanation of the papal selection process said:

“The papal selection process, albeit lengthy, has been carried out thus far with integrity, transparency and inclusion of the broad spectrum of the Coptic Orthodox Church both inside and outside Egypt. As we approach the selection of the new pope, we are confident that this process has been carried out for centuries, and is not merely based on democratic election, but primarily on a collective prayerfulness and faith in God’s choice.”


For more information please contact:

Media and Public Relations Officer
The Coptic Orthodox Church UK
Tel: +44 (0)207 1937076
Media and Public Relations Office
The Coptic Orthodox Church Centre
Shephalbury Manor
Broadhall Way, Stevenage
Hertfordshire SG2 8NP
England, United Kingdom
Tel.: +44 (0)207 1937076
Fax: +44 (0)1438 313879
Office Email: