CAIRO – 26 September 2018: After a series of suicide attempts by the monks of the controversial St. Macarius Monastery over the last month, monk Zeinoun al-Makari took his own life.
Monk Zeinoun, who was lately moved from St. Macarius Monastery in Beheira’s Wadi El-Natrun where the monastery’s head was killed, allegedly killed himself in Al-Muharraq Monastery in Upper Egypt’s Assiut.
Egypt's Orthodox Church spokesman Bolis Halim announced the death of Zeinoun (monk Ash'eya's confession father) and did not mention anything about a suicide attempt. A statement by the church said that the prosecution is currently carrying out investigations to know the cause of Zeinoun’s death.
Six monks were moved from Wadi El-Natrun’s monastery late in August to six different monasteries following the murder of St. Macarius Monastery Head Bishop Epiphanius in July.
Barnabas al-Makari of St. Macarius named in August four monks who, he thinks, incited the murder of the bishop, including Zeinoun, Saleeb, Antonius and Ash’eya.
Ash’eyaa was officially charged on August 19 of deliberately murdering Epiphanius.
A source told Egypt Today that Zeinoun lost his life only few minutes before he reached the hospital.
According to the source, a number of Muharraq Monastery monks went to call Zeinoun for midnight praises, where they found him in his room suffering severe stomach ache, adding that he was consequently moved to Saint Maria hospital, which is about one-hour away from the monastery.
A source revealed that an empty pesticide bottle was found in Zeinoun’s room, suggesting that the monk had deliberately ingested the pesticide to kill himself.
Bishop Epiphanius was found dead on July 29 inside St. Macarius Monastery and two monks, who were kept in detention pending investigation since then, confessed their crime.
On Aug. 19, the court charged the suspected monks - expelled monk Ash’eya, whose birth name is Wael Saad, and monk Faltaous al-Makary, whose birth name is Raymond Rasmi Mansour- with the deliberate murder of Bishop Epiphanius.
Ash’eya tried to commit suicide on August 6, a day after the Coptic Church stripped him of his sacerdotal rank, although he was not yet officially charged of murder. Moreover, on the same day, Faltaous cut his wrist and then jumped off a high building inside the monastery, trying to kill himself.
On Sunday, Damanhur Criminal Court adjourned the trial of the two Coptic Christian monks to December 27.
CAIRO - 4 August 2018: Egyptian bishops deactivated their social media accounts after Pope Tawadros II had issued a set of rules regulating monasticism on Thursday. Although the decision only addresses monks, the bishops’ initiative aims at setting an example of obedience to younger generations at convents.