Egyptian Council of Churches marks Tenth Anniversary

Sent On: 
Sat, 2023-02-18
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On Saturday evening, February 11th, the Egyptian Council of Churches celebrated its tenth anniversary with an evening program and dinner on the grounds of All Saints Anglican/Episcopal Cathedral in the Zamalek neighborhood of Cairo. The inaugural meeting was held at St. Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in ʿAbbāsiyya (Cairo) on February 18th, 2013. The council includes representatives from five major denominations in Egypt, including the Coptic Orthodox Church, the Coptic Catholic Church, the Anglican/Episcopal Church, the Evangelical/Protestant Churches, and the Greek Orthodox Church. Pope Tawāḑrūs II (Coptic Orthodox), Patriarch Ibrāhīm Isḥāq (Coptic Catholic), Archbishop Sāmī Fawzī (Anglican/Episcopal), and Rev. Dr. Andrea Zakī (Evangelical/Protestant) were in attendance. Greek Orthodox Patriarch Theodorus II was unable to attend and was represented by Archimandrite Damaskinos [Dhamaskīnūs] al-Azraʿī and other officials.




(Represntatives from the Egyptian Council of Churches meet on February 11th) 


In comments to Dialogue Across Borders, Anglican Archbishop Emeritus Mounīr Anīs described the origins of the council: “Before the founding of the council in 2013, there was not really a consistent framework for institutional cooperation between Egyptian churches. Although the Middle East Council of Churches is based in Lebanon, some coordination between Egyptian churches took place through its office in Cairo. After the 2011 Egyptian revolution, I was involved in discussions with Pope Shenūda III and Cardinal Antūnīūs Nagīb about the importance of establishing a council. Many of us felt a growing urgency especially as the Muslim Brotherhood started to take power. After Pope Shenūda passed away in March 2012, Pope Tawāḍrūs II shared the same vision and the council was finally established in 2013 with representatives from the five major churches.” 


In his remarks at the event, outgoing Secretary General Archimandrite Damaskinos outlined recent activities of the council, highlighting in particular the work of seven subcommittees for women, youth, dialogue, finance, media, and pastoral care. He noted a number of key conferences that the council has held at the Anafora retreat center in recent years. The incoming secretary general is Rev. Yeshūʿ Bakhīt, assistant dean at All Saints Anglican/Episcopal Cathedral, as the presidency of the council rotates for the next two years to the Anglican/Episcopal church in Egypt. 


With best wishes,

Matthew Anderson 

Executive Editor 

Dialogue Across Borders 


February 18th, 2023


Helpful Links


The Egyptian Council of Churches


The Middle East Council of Churches