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April 23, 2019 - Baramouda 15, 1735

Departure of Pope Mark, (Marcus) VI, the 101st Patriarch

On this day also, of the year 1372 A.M. (April 20th., 1656 A.D).), Pope Mark (Marcus) VI, 101st Patriarch of Alexandria, departed. He was known as Marcus El-Bahgoury. He was from Bahgourah, and became a monk in the monastery of St. Antonios.

When Pope Matteos III, 100th Pope, departed, the archon Beshara, the lay leader of that time, agreed with the people on ordaining this father. Anba Khristozolo, Bishop of Jerusalem, headed the celebration of the enthronement, on Sunday, the fifteenth of Barmoudah, 1362 A.M. (April 20th. 1646 A.D.), and was called Marcus VI. After his ordination, a vast dispute took place between him and the archon Beshara.

From his famous achievements, he issued an order preventing the monks from living in the world, ordering them to return to their monasteries. The monks were raged because of this order, did not consent to it, and refrained from obeying it. Satan, the enemy of the good, moved one of the monks called Kodsy, to write a petition to the Governor (Basha), accusing the Pope that he tortured the people and killed them. The Governor ordered an investigation to uncover the truth. During the inquiry, the monk denied writing the petition. The Pope was exonerated from the accusations that were in the complainant petition, but he was ordered to pay a heavy fine which was paid by the lay leaders of the country.

On the 21st of Tubah, 1365 A.M., an order was issued to prevent Christians from riding horses, wearing red caftans (A long sleeved outer garment), and red broadcloth skull caps. However they were to wear blue caftans thirty feet long.

The Patriarch went to Upper Egypt and stayed there for four years, during which he collected much money and was foolish in his conduct, to the point that all the people, bishops, priests, and lay leaders, were exasperated. The dispute, existed between him and the archon Beshara, went on until he returned to Cairo. He then reconciled with him, and his behavior was straighten after that. He built the prayer hall in the convent of the church of the virgin in Haret Zeewaila in Cairo.

Pope Marcus departed on the 15th of Barmoudah, 1372 A.M. (April 20th. 1656 AD.). He was buried in the church of Abu Saifain in Old Cairo, after he stayed on the Chair for ten full years. He was a contemporary to El Sultan Ibrahim I and El Sultan Mohammed IV, and the Chair was vacant for four years, seven months and sixteen days after him. His prayers be with us and Glory be to our God forever. Amen.