CAIRO: Coptic Orthodox Church is waiting for their 118th pope of Alexandria and patriarch of the see of St Mark, the seat of which has been vacant since Pope Shenouda III died last March.
On October 29 the election of three from among the five candidates nominated for the papacy was conducted. The three winners who will be candidates for the altar draw that will determine the name of 118th pope of Alexandria and patriarch of the see of St Mark are, in order of the highest votes scored: Anba Raphail, Bishop-General of Downtown Cairo; Anba Tawodros, Bishop-General of Beheira; and the monk Father Raphail Ava Mina.
The names were announced in a press conference held at 9:00pm at the premises of St Mark’s cathedral at Anba Rweiss in Abassiya, Cairo, by the acting patriarch Anba Pachomeus.
In elections which saw a voter turnout of some 90 per cent—2177 voters showed up for the elections out of a total 2412 eligible voters, plus the five bishops from the Ethiopian Church who took part in the vote—only two votes were invalid.
Anba Raphail scored 1980 votes, Anba Tawodros 1623, and Fr Rapahail Ava Mina 1530.
The altar draw will be conducted next Sunday after Holy Mass at the St Mark’s cathedral in Abassiya, Cairo; which Anba Pachomeus said would begin at 8:00am. The three names will be placed in a big glass box on the altar and, right after Mass, a blindfolded child will draw one of the names: the name of the new pope.
The new pope will be enthroned on Sunday18 November.