Accessibility links

Breaking News

Coptic Christians Choose New Pope


The Coptic Orthodox Church has selected Bishop Tawadros as the faith's new pope.

During a lavish ceremony at the Abbasiya Cathedral in Cairo, the name of the 60-year-old bishop was selected by a blindfolded child from a glass bowl that also contained the names of two other candidates.

Tawadros will succeed Pope Shenouda III, who headed the church for 40 years before dying in March at the age of 88.

Tawadros -- who worked for the powerful Bishop Pachomius, who served as acting head of the church following Shenouda's death -- is known as a theologian who eschews political matters.

He will be formally consecrated as pope on November 18.

Copts are the largest Christian sect in the Middle East and make up as much as 10 percent of Egypt's population of 83 million people.

Copts have long expressed concerns about discrimination in the Muslim-dominated country, fears that have increased since Islamist President Mohamed Morsi came to power in June.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP