Coptic Orthodox Pope Shenouda III’s family held his funeral at the Virgin Mary Church in the central Cairo district of Garden City. The pope’s nephews, ‘Ādil and ‘Imād Raphael held a funeral under the family's name to express their grief over the pope's departure. [‘Imād Khalīl, Fādī Francis and Mīnā Ghālī, al-Misrī al-Yawm, March 24, p. 6] Read original text in Arabic
Several clerics and politicians attended the funeral to offer their condolences to the family. [‘Imād Khalīl, Fādī Francis and Mīnā Ghālī, al-Misrī al-Yawm, March 24, 2012, p. 6] Read original text in Arabic
In an opinion article at al-Ahrām, Mārī Ya’qūb writes that churches of different Christian denominations offer social services for the poor and marginalized categories through centers and associations, adding they often include cultural, artistic and educational activities.
The centers, affiliated to the church, avoid organizing entertainment activities, fearing criticism by anti-church movements, but they continue offering their socio-medical services to which people from different segments in the society contribute.
Some of these centers include the association for scientific and cultural development (Jesuit) in al-Fajjālah (Catholic), which provides social, artistic and spiritual services and celebrates the Muslim holy fasting month of Ramadān as one of the cultural activities, the Hadarah association in al-Sharābīyah which offers medical awareness services where Muslims and Christians work together. [Mārī Ya’qūb, al-Ahrām, March 24, 2012, p. 21] Read original text in Arabic
In order to achieve national unity, it is important to develop the language of religious discourse between Muslims and Christians to achieve tolerance and coexistence between them, writes Nādiah Yūsuf in an opinion article in al-Ahrām.
Jamāl As’ad believes that the church should not interfere in politics but its role should be limited to a religious one.
Mahmūd Abāzah, former leader of al-Wafd Party, said that Bishop Shenouda [Reviewer’s Note: Coptic Orthodox Pope Shenouda III is the correct and common title] was a patriotic, political and religious person.
Abāzah added that he has no concerns about the future of the Coptic Orthodox Church because it has always been a shield for the Egyptian patriotism.
On the other hand, Ishāq Ibrāhīm, who is responsible for the freedom of belief in the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, said that Copts have concerns about the future after the pope has gone because the personality of the pope does not exist in any of the bishops nominated for the position, in addition to the ascension of the political Islamist movements. [Nādiah Yūsuf, al-Ahrām, March 24, p. 21] Read original article in Arabic