Anba Angaelos

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His Grace Bishop Angaelos of the Coptic Orthodox Church Centre.jpg
Installed14 November 1999
Other postsMember of the Holy Synod of the Coptic Orthodox Church
ConsecrationConsecrated by Pope Shenouda III
Personal details
Birth nameAnba Angaelos[1]
Cairo, Egypt[3]
DenominationOriental Orthodoxy
ResidenceUnited Kingdom

Bishop Angaelos was consecrated in 1999 as a General Bishop (a rank between auxiliary bishop and chorbishop) in the United Kingdom of the Coptic Orthodox Church,[1] the church of Egypt founded, according to its tradition, by Mark the Apostle around 55 AD and the largest Christian denomination in the Middle East. He was born in Cairo, Egypt and emigrated with his family to Australia; he spent his childhood and early life there, obtained his Bachelor of Arts, majoring in political science, philosophy and sociology, and went on to postgraduate studies in law whilst working in the same field. He returned to Egypt in 1990 to join the Monastery of Saint Bishoy in Wadi-El-Natroun, where he was subsequently consecrated a monk by Pope Shenouda III. He served as Papal secretary until 1995, and was then delegated by the Pope to serve as a parish priest in the United Kingdom.[3] His nationality is recorded as British at Companies House.[2]

On 18 November 2017, Bishop Angaelos was enthroned as the first Coptic Orthodox Bishop of London, having served as General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom since 1999. In addition to this new role, Pope Tawadros II, Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of Saint Mark, has also seen it fit that he continue representing the Church in the United Kingdom at the ecumenical and official level as Papal Legate, and thus conferred him with the ecclesial title of Bishop of London.

Bishop Angaelos is widely recognised for his extensive advocacy work, and as a result he was conferred the honour of Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty The Queen for ‘Services to International Religious Freedom.’ Bishop Angaelos has also been conferred the Lambeth Cross for Ecumenism by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Coventry Cross of Nails for Reconciliation. With a pastoral ministry spanning more than two decades, Bishop Angaelos specialises in youth ministry and travels around the world to speak at youth conferences and conventions.

Having commenced his pastoral ministry in the United Kingdom in 1995 as a parish priest, Bishop Angaelos was consecrated a General Bishop in 1999 by the late Pope Shenouda III, with whom he served as private secretary. He was proclaimed Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of London by Pope Tawadros II, and the Holy Synod of the Coptic Orthodox Church during a historic service at St Bishoy Monastery in Wadi-El-Natrun, Egypt.

Bishop Angaelos specialises in initiatives relating to advocacy, international religious freedom and development work, and is a member of, and chairs, numerous local, national and international bodies dealing with these matters. He 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.

Bishop 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 visited refugee camps in Greece, Lebanon, Kurdistan and Jordan, and continues to work tirelessly to promote collaboration across the whole spectrum of his official, ecumenical and inter-religious engagements[4][5], to facilitate the support of and assistance to those in greatest need and suffering persecution and displacement.


Bishop 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. He was proclaimed Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of London on 11 November 2017 in Egypt, and enthroned over the new Diocese on 18 November 2017 at the Cathedral of Saint George in England.

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.


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.


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.[6]

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
  • 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.


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.[7]


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.[8] 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]

  • President of Bible Society UK
  • President of Churches Together in England
  • 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
  • Founder and Convener of the Asylum Advocacy Group
  • 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)


In the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours, Angaelos was awarded an OBE for services to international religious freedom.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Malankara Orthodox Church of India/Malankara Nazrani". Retrieved 30 November 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "Bishop ANGAELOS - Personal Appointments". Companies House. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  3. ^ a b "His Grace Bishop Angaelos Coptic Orthodox Bishop of London, United Kingdom". Bishop Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  4. ^ "RFI Holds Book Launch and Panel Discussion on Coptic Martyrs and Religious Pluralism in the Middle East". Religious Freedom Institute. Retrieved 2019-12-24.
  5. ^ "Monks and Martyrs". Plough. Retrieved 2019-12-24.
  6. ^ "Churches Together in England". Retrieved 2016-04-20.
  7. ^ World Council of Churches 10th Assembly, list of delegates (Microsoft Excel spreadsheet) Archived September 27, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "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.
  9. ^ "Campaigning bishop is among people honoured in Hertfordshire". ITV Web site. 12 June 2015. Retrieved 30 November 2015.

External links[edit]