Anba Angaelos

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Bishop Anba Angaelos OBE
General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria
His Grace Bishop Angaelos of the Coptic Orthodox Church Centre.jpg
Installed 14 November 1999
Other posts Member of the Holy Synod of the Coptic Orthodox Church
Orders
Ordination 1999
Consecration Consecrated by Pope Shenouda III
Personal details
Birth name [1]
Born August 1967[2]
Cairo, Egypt[3]
Nationality British Egyptian[2]
Denomination Christianity, Oriental Orthodoxy
Residence Coptic Orthodox Church Centre, Stevenage, United Kingdom

Anba Angaelos is General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom, and is widely recognised for his extensive advocacy work. As a result, he was conferred with the honour of Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty the Queen, for ‘Services to International Religious Freedom’.[4] He has also been conferred with the Lambeth Cross for Ecumenism by the Archbishop of Canterbury,[5] and the Coventry Cross of Nails for Reconciliation. With a pastoral ministry spanning two decades, Angaelos also specialises in youth ministry and travels extensively around the world to speak at youth conferences and conventions.[6]

Having commenced his pastoral ministry in the United Kingdom in 1995 as a parish priest, Angaelos was consecrated a General Bishop in 1999 by His Holiness, the late Pope Shenouda III, with whom he served as private secretary. Since then he has specialised in initiatives relating to advocacy, human rights, international religious freedom and development work, and is a member of, and chairs, numerous local, national and international bodies dealing with these matters. His Grace is founder and convener of the Asylum Advocacy Group which works closely in partnership with the All Party Parliamentary Group on International Religious Freedom or Belief.

As director of the Media and Communications Office in the United Kingdom and Europe,[7] Angaelos frequently issues statements and comments relating to current religious and minority issues, with his particular focus on dialogue, conflict-resolution, and reconciliation. His comments and views are frequently sought on matters of human rights, civil liberties and international religious freedom, particularly in relation to the situation in Egypt, the Middle East, and North Africa.

He has been ecumenically active at local, national and international levels, while also actively working in the area of inter-religious relations. He works extensively to build bridges and promote dialogue and unity between Churches, faiths and communities in the United Kingdom and has established and maintains contact with governmental, inter-religious and ecumenical bodies through which this work is enabled. Under the leadership of Bishop Angaelos, the Coptic Orthodox Church is now a member of all the official ecumenical instruments in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland.

Biography[edit]

Angaelos was born in Egypt and emigrated to Australia in his early childhood with his family. After obtaining his degree in Political science, Philosophy and Sociology, he continued on to postgraduate studies in law while working in the same field. In 1990 he returned to Egypt to the monastery of St Bishoy in Wadi-El-Natroun where he was consecrated a monk by the late Pope Shenouda III and served as his private secretary until 1995 when he was delegated to serve in the United Kingdom.

Official representation[edit]

Church ecumenical and public relations in the United Kingdom. Ecumenical activity at local, national and international levels, also working extensively in the area of inter-religious relations.

Local[edit]

Churches Together in Stevenage (CTIS)

Churches Together in Stevenage (CTIS) is the gathering of Christian churches in Stevenage and surrounding Hertfordshire villages, it has 30 member churches and 6 associate member organisations. The Coptic Orthodox Church is member of CTIS and is represented by Angaelos.

National[edit]

General Synod of the Church of England

During the February 2012 session of the General Synod, Angaelos became the first appointed representative to it of the Council of Oriental Orthodox Churches in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Churches Together in England

Angaelos is a director of Churches Together in England.[8]

Churches Together in Britain and Ireland

The Coptic Orthodox Church is a member of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI), represented by Angaelos, a trustee and Moderator of the Board of Trustees.

Churches Interfaith Religious Network (CIRN), an ecumenical instrument of CTBI

The Churches' Inter Religious Network succeeds the Churches' Commission for Inter Faith Relations. It is the churches' ecumenical forum on inter faith matters.

Moderator of the CIRN

Angaelos has been the Moderator since 2007

Council of the Oriental Orthodox Churches in the United Kingdom and Ireland (COOC)

The following Oriental Orthodox Churches are members of the COOC:

  • The Armenian Apostolic Church
  • The Coptic Orthodox Church, incorporating the Orthodox Church
  • The Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church
  • The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church
  • The Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church
  • The Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch, incorporating the Malankara Jacobite Syrian Church

Angaelos was chairperson as of 2013. He had been President from July 2010 to July 2012 (maximum 2 terms).

Anglican-Oriental Orthodox Regional Forum (AOORF)

The purpose of the Forum is to bring together representatives from the Church of England and those Oriental Orthodox Churches which are increasingly present in the United Kingdom. In summary the aims of the Forum are to receive and consider documents from international dialogues and their local relevance and implications amongst both clergy and laity; to encourage the unity of the Church through common prayer, worship, witness and education; and to discuss current pastoral, social and political issues and where appropriate make representations and responses to these issues. Bishops Angaelos and Geoffrey Rowell are the Co-chairs.

Catholic-Oriental Orthodox Regional Forum (COORF)

COORF tries to work within areas which can be agreed upon. Angaelos and Archbishop Kevin McDonald are the Co-Chairs.

Christian-Muslim Forum (CMF)

Angaelos is one of the six Scholar Consultants who have been appointed to support the theological and scholarly work of the CMF.

International[edit]

Lausanne Orthodox Initiative

This is an international initiative that brings together evangelical members of the Lausanne Movement with members of the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Churches, to bring better and deep relationships between them. Angaelos is a Co-Chair.

Anglican-Oriental Orthodox International Theological Commission

The Anglican - Oriental Orthodox Commission was established in 2001 and began its work by addressing questions of Christology. It has produced a draft Agreement on Christology, which is currently being considered by the Churches of the Anglican Communion. Talks aimed at the resumption of dialogue are in progress. Angaelos represents the Coptic Orthodox Church on the Commission.

World Council of Churches (WCC)

The Coptic Orthodox Church is a member of the WCC; Angaelos represented it at the 9th Assembly in Brazil in 2006 and was a delegate at the 10th Assembly in Korea in 2013.[9]

Initiatives[edit]

Asylum Advocacy Group (AAG)

The Coptic Orthodox Church UK Asylum Advocacy Group was formed in 2007 by Angaelos, who is the chair, and incorporates the following interested parties:

The Coptic Orthodox Church, Christian Solidarity Worldwide, The Evangelical Alliance, UK Copts Association, United Copts of Great Britain, Educational Relief Trust, Barnabus Fund, Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust. Baroness Cox and Angaelos are founder members of the AAG; clergy, lawyers and specialists in human rights are members.

The AAG addresses the religious faith problems and issues that Muslim-Christian converts from Egypt have during their asylum application process with the United Kingdom Border Agency (UKBA). A Report for the AAG was commissioned in 2007 to look at addressing the experience of Egyptian converts to Christianity in the UK asylum system. This Report is now used to brief the Home Office, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and the judiciary. It is also used to support the applications of affected parties. The AAG is currently working with the UKBA on training needs and requirements for case workers to ensure that asylum seekers who are converts receive fair and unbiased treatment.

The Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom under Angaelos's leadership responded to a government consultation on same-sex civil marriage on 14 June 2012, saying that it could not support the proposal, and asking the Government Equalities Office to carefully consider several points.[10] A press release on the same date made the same points, and included a statement by Angaelos that marriage was a "union that potentially brings forth a new life".

Official positions[edit]

  • Moderator of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland
  • Chair of the Council of the Oriental Orthodox Churches in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland
  • Co-chair of the Anglican-Oriental Orthodox Regional Forum
  • Member of the Anglican-Oriental Orthodox International Commission
  • Co-founder and Co-chair of the Catholic-Oriental Orthodox Regional Forum
  • Co-founder and Co-chair of the Lausanne-Orthodox Initiative
  • Moderator of the Churches’ Inter-Religious Network for Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CIRN)
  • Director of Churches Together in England
  • Trustee of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland
  • Ecumenical participant of the Church of England General Synod
  • Member of the Anglican-Oriental Orthodox International Theological Commission
  • Member of the Global Council of the United Bible Society
  • Member of the Coptic Delegation to the World Council of Churches
  • Chair of Christians Aware
  • Member of Christian Solidarity Worldwide Board of Reference
  • Scholar-Consultant on the Christian-Muslim Forum
  • Chair and Founder of Foundations for Hope (FFH)

Patronages[edit]

  • Christians Aware
  • The Ecumenical Society of the Blessed Virgin Mary
  • The Apostolic Order of St Hadrian of Canterbury
  • The SAT 7 Trust UK
  • British Egyptian Public Affairs Committee
  • Embrace The Middle East
  • Awareness Foundation

In the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours, Angaelos was awarded an OBE for services to international religious freedom.[11]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Malankara Orthodox Church of India/Malankara Nazrani". Marthoman.tv. Retrieved 30 November 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "Bishop ANGAELOS - Personal Appointments". Companies House. Retrieved 30 November 2015. 
  3. ^ "His Grace Bishop Angaelos General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom". Bishop Angaelos.org. Retrieved 7 May 2015. 
  4. ^ "The Coptic Orthodox Church UK: Press Release: Historic prayers at St Paul's Cathedral on the same day Bishop Angaelos receives OBE". copticcentre.blogspot.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-20. 
  5. ^ "Archbishop of Canterbury's Awards ceremony held at Lambeth Palace". www.archbishopofcanterbury.org. Retrieved 2016-04-20. 
  6. ^ "Bishop Angaelos.org". Bishop Angaelos.org. Retrieved 2016-04-20. 
  7. ^ "The Coptic Orthodox Church UK". www.copticmediauk.com. Retrieved 2016-04-20. 
  8. ^ "Churches Together in England". www.cte.org.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-20. 
  9. ^ World Council of Churches 10th Assembly, list of delegates (Microsoft Excel spreadsheet) Archived September 27, 2014, at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ "A response to the Government Equalities Office consultation on same–sex civil marriage from the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom". Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom. 14 June 2014. Retrieved 30 November 2015. 
  11. ^ "Campaigning bishop is among people honoured in Hertfordshire". ITV Web site. 12 June 2015. Retrieved 30 November 2015. 

External links[edit]