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ARC Home > News and Resources > News archive:

ARC condolences on the passing of Pope Shenouda III

March 19, 2012 :

His Holiness Pope Shenouda III whose passing was announced on March 17, 2012

It was with great sadness that ARC staff have learned of the passing of His Holiness Pope Shenouda III, the 117th Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of All Africa on the holy Apostolic See of Saint Mark the Evangelist of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria.

The departure of His Holiness was announced in a statement released on March 19, 2012, by His Grace Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of The Coptic Orthodox Church in the UK.

Bishop Angaelos paid tribute to the inspirational Patriarch who had led the church since 1971:

“His Holiness Pope Shenouda III will be remembered by his Church as a dedicated servant of God and of the people, a man who faithfully endured through conflict, opposition, and persecution.

ARC's Martin Palmer and Victoria Finlay with Pope Shenouda in 2003
"His Holiness built upon the foundation laid by our Lord Jesus Christ, enhancing the Church in a variety of ways, encouraging a spirit of unity for all of humanity. May his prayers be with us all, and may he find joy and rest in the Kingdom of our gracious Lord.”

Martin Palmer, Secretary General of ARC, expressed his admiration for His Holiness both as a visionary leader with a commitment to the environment and also as a memorable personality:

"Last year at ARC's celebrations in Assisi, the Coptic Orthodox Church unveiled their long term plan and their commitment to make one of their most important pilgrim monasteries, a Green Pilgrim Site.

"This flowed from a meeting ARC had with His Holiness Pope Shenouda and Bishop Angaelos a few years earlier when His Holiness spelt out the central theological importance of Nature to the Coptic Orthodox worldview. His vision - of a world beloved by its Creator - has led the Coptic Orthodox Church to become one of the major forces for social and community good in Egypt and now, to become one of the key forces for the good of all Creation.

The monastery of St Pishoy, a founding Green Pilgrim Network site
"I personally shall miss his larger than life personality but rejoice that we have been able to assist in developing his vision for the Church and the whole World of Creation in a small but significant way. "

You can read the Coptic Orthodox Green Pilgrimage Theology statement here .

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