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Coptic Pope Tawadros II deletes official Facebook account after new church social media rule

Marina Barsoum , Friday 3 Aug 2018
 Tawadros II
File Photo: Coptic Pope Tawadros II, head of the Coptic Orthodox church, carries a censer of burning incense as he takes part in a ritual as part of a Coptic Orthodox Easter mass at the main cathedral in Cairo (Photo: Reuters)
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Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II deleted his official Facebook page on Friday, after a new church regulation banned personal pages for monks.

Bishops in the Coptic Orthodox Church are selected from among the church’s monks.

The Monastic Affairs Committee of the Holy Synod issued 12 new decrees regulating monasteries on Thursday.

The move by the synod, the church's top decision-making body, came following the unsolved murder last week of Bishop Epiphanius, the head of Abu Maqar monastery in Wadi El-Natroun.

The decrees cover issues including monks’ use of social media, media appearances, and the construction of unlicenced worship sites.

Tawadros has not been active on Facebook since he became pope in November 2012.

He occasionally shares his thoughts online around major church events.

Many other Coptic bishops have also shut down their official Facebook pages following the decree. 

However, the Twitter accounts of Tawadros and many other bishops are still active.

Tawadros has previously reported comments expressed reservations about social media sites, saying that they have “sown differences and sparked wars.”

 

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