“The era of Pope Shenouda III witnessed massive sectarian clashes, the likes of which have
not been seen since the
time of Muhammad ‘Alī [Reviewer: the ruler of Egypt between 1805
and 1848 A.D.]. Besides,
clergymen are unfairly judged without being heard. We have become medieval
[Reviewer: the author is drawing a
comparison to the confiscation of logic, i.e. burning works of
literature, that occurred during medieval times, in
how Father Mattá al-Maskīn’s writings are
being banned in the present day] after burning books of
prominent scholar Father Mattá al-Maskīn
in the yard of the Coptic cathedral,” said the head of Saint
Athanasius Church, Bishop Maximus
Hannā, in a televised interview on ‘Dream’ satellite channel.
aforementioned quote was
picked up by lawyer Dr. Najīb Jibrā’īl, who accordingly filed a
against Maximus, accusing him of publicly slandering the pope. Jibrā’īl argued
alleged bishop [Maximus] tried to stir up Copts’ emotions against the pope by talking about burning al-
Maskīn’s books, and considered this an attempt at creating unrest amongst Copts.
news, the spokesperson of Saint Athanasius Church, Dr. Samīr Fādil, said that
had distorted Maximus’ statements, adding that the pope is surrounded by people who
try to divert Copts’ attention
from vital issues of church reform.