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Egypt's Pope Tawadros leads 40th-day memorial service for slain bishop

Marina Barsoum, Saturday 8 Sep 2018
Pope
Egypt's Coptic Pope Tawadros II commemorating death of slain Bishop Epishanius on Saturday September 8, 2019 at Abu Makkar Monastery (Photo: Courtesy of Coptic Orthodox Church Spokesperson)
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Egypt's Coptic Pope Tawadros II led a fortieth-day memorial service on Saturday for Bishop Epiphanius, an abbot who was found dead inside the monastery he led in July.

The pope and other bishops gathered at Abu Maqar monastery in Wadi El-Natroun, about 90km north-west of Cairo, to pray for the former abbot. 

Two monks from the same monastery are currently detained and being investigated by the prosecution, having reportedly confessed to conspiring to kill Epiphanius.  

Epiphanius’ death prompted 12 new decrees regulating monks’ behaviour from Pope Tawadros, including a temporary freeze on new recruits, a ban on monks leaving monastery grounds without permission, and restrictions on monks’ use of social networks and media appearances.

The pope also shut down his Facebook page.

The Coptic Orthodox Church typically holds a memorial service on the fortieth day after a person's death, as do some other Christian traditions.

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