Coptic women protest bishop's statements on dress

Coptic women protest bishop's statements on dress (Photo: Al-Masry Al-Youm)

Dozens of Coptic protesters staged a demonstration Friday morning outside the papal residence in Abbasseya to demand that Bishop Bishoy apologize for a statement calling on Coptic women to imitate Muslim women in their dress.

Bishoy, the secretary of the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church and candidate for the papal position, made a statement four days ago saying: “I call on Christian girls to learn from veiled Muslim women their modesty. Some Christian women might be displeased with me, but the Virgin Mary, St. Demiana and the nuns wore modest clothes.”

Female protesters chanted at Bishop Pachomius, the acting pope, “Bishop Pachomius, why are you silent, aren't we your daughters?”

The protesters raised banners that read, “No to insulting the Coptic woman,” “The Coptic woman is a symbol of dignity and strength,” and “The Coptic woman is not a tool to achieve political interests.”

One of the protesters said that Bishoy “aims to appease the Islamist movements at the expense of Coptic women.” Some men were present in solidarity with the female protesters, while Coptic political movements did not participate.

...

[Excerpt—See accompanying URL for full original text]