Coptic Catholic Church

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The Coptic Catholic Church is a church in full communion with the Pope in Rome instead of the Pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria. The church has about 162,000 members (as of 2007). Most of the members are in Egypt. Coptic Catholics are seen as a schism from the Coptic Orthodox Church. They left that church in order to come into full communion with the Catholic Church. The current Coptic Catholic Patriarch of Alexandria is Archbishop Antonios Naguib.

In 1990, Coptic Catholic sources estimated that there were about 10,000 followers in countries other than Egypt. These followers are under the care of local Latin Rite bishops. There are Coptic Catholic parishes in: Paris, Montréal, New York City, Los Angeles, Sydney, and Melbourne.

History[change | edit source]

In 1741, a Coptic bishop in Jerusalem named Anba Athanasius became a Catholic. Pope Benedict XIV appointed him Vicar Apostolic of the small community (approximately 2,000 people) who also became Catholics. Although Athanasius returned to the Coptic Orthodox Church later, a line of Catholic Vicars Apostolic continued after him.

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