Mon, 29 May 2023 - 09:18 GMT
Mon, 29 May 2023 - 09:18 GMT
Pope Tawadros II gives belongings of Coptic Christian Martyrs who were killed by ISIS in Libya to Pope Francis during the first’s visit to Rome on May 11- photo from Pope Francis’ Twitter account.
CAIRO – 29 May 2023: Pope Tawadros II, head of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark, arrived at Cairo International Airport on Sunday evening after making a pastoral trip that lasted 20 days, during which he visited the Vatican and three Coptic dioceses in Europe and invited Pope Francis to visit Egypt again.
Pope Tawadros II met with the Pope Francis of the Vatican at the invitation of the Catholic Church to celebrate the golden jubilee of the return of relations between the Coptic Orthodox and Catholic churches when the late Shenouda III of Alexandria visited the Vatican in 1973.
On May 10, 1973, the late Pope Shenouda III signed a historic Christological declaration alongside Pope Paul VI in the Vatican, after years of accumulated discord. Then in the new millennium, Pope John Paul II visited Egypt in an unprecedented pilgrimage. A split occurred between the Coptic Church and the other Catholic Churches due to a dispute over monotheism in 451 AD.
The Egyptian Pope’s pastoral tour included the Diocese of Turin and Rome, the Diocese of Milan, Italy, as well as the Diocese of Austria.
On the following day of his return, Pope Tawadros held a meeting with a number of representatives of the Coptic print, visual and electronic media outlets at the Apostolic Headquarters in Cairo.
He said that his visit was successful, noting that belongings of Coptic Christians who were killed in Libya were to dedicate to the Church of Rome. During his visit, Pope Tawadros II conducted medical checks in Austria, adding that were reassuring.
For his part, Pope Francis prayed for the Coptic martyrs, saying on his Twitter account: “united with those of the Theotokos, continue to help our Churches grow in friendship, until the blessed day when we can celebrate at the same altar and receive together the Body and Blood of the Savior.”
“It is with great joy that I welcomed today His Holiness Tawadros II, Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark, beloved brother and dear friend, with whom I celebrated the 50th anniversary of the historic meeting between Pope St. Paul VI and Pope Shenouda III,” he continued.
The Pope said that he invited the Pope of the Vatican to visit Egypt and Pope Francis promised to think of this invitation. Pope Francis visited Egypt on April 28 and 29, 2017, at an invitation by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi. During his visit to Egypt, he promoted dialogue with the Muslim world following attacks against the Middle East’s biggest Christian community. He also delivered a speech at Al-Azhar International Peace Conference saying, “The future principally relies on the dialogue between all religions.”