St. Shenouda the Archimandrite Coptic Society

Society Progress 2003-4

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Beginning August 13, 2004, the Society held its sixth general conference of Coptic Studies.  This two-day event was held on the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), through the courtesy of the University authorities and the hard work of the Coptic Collegiate Club there. To celebrate the Society's 25th year of operation, the Conference subject was the Life and Times of St. Shenouda the Archimandrite.  There were 12 presentations delivered by and for scholars and members of the Society from the US and Australia.  Over 70 people attended some or all of the presentations.  This was the eighth Society-sponsored scholarly event in the field of Coptic Studies in Los Angeles.  It helped to further the Society's efforts to promote scholarly research among the Coptic Community in this field.

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St. Mark Foundation (SMF) has successfully concluded the second Symposium on Coptic Monasticism, which dealt with the history of Christianity and Monasticism in the Oasis of the Fayoum.  This five-day event was held at Deir al-Azab in the area, hosted by the bishop of al-Fayoum Anba Abram under the auspices of H.H. Pope Shenouda III.  Over 30 papers were presented about virtually all aspects of Christian life in this famous oasis.  Locally the event was greatly welcomed by the people and the government which is a tribute to the tireless effort of the bishop and the Christians there.  The Symposium also highlighted the magnificient efforts of the Polish Archeological Mission.  With meager funds they quietly and diligently worked and we were privileged to have them share the deservingly wonderful results that they found in the area.  It was truly a historical event.  Dr. Fawzy Estafanous and the organizational staff of SMF, headed by Dr. Hoda Garas did a great job.  The tireless efforts of Dr. Gawdat Gabra in developing and organizing the scholarily aspects of this meeting were also instrumental in its success.  He assembled a program and a list of participants that is world-class in the field.  This was matched by the world-class treatment that was given to all who attended by the scores of volunteers and workers assembled by the Diocese.  Several members and officers of the Society were present at the event.

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Every four years the International Association of Coptic Studies (IACS) sponsors a meeting of scholars and students involved in Coptic Studies, organized and hosted by an institution involved in the field.  This time, it was the L’Institut de Recherche et d’Histoire des Textes in Paris.  It was convened during the period of June 28 to July 3, 2004, beginning with an address by the President of IACS, Prof. Tito Orlandi and concluding with a business meeting for members.  About 165 papers were read by scholars and students, covering all aspects of Coptic Studies. This number included several Copts and some among them were selected to be moderators of sessions.  The IACS board accepted the invitation of H.H. Pope Shenouda III, presented by SMF, to convene the 9th Congress in Egypt.  Dr. Ramez Boutrous was nominated by SMF and was accepted by IACS as the Secretary of that congress.  The Society will be playing a significant role in the preparation along with the Patriarchate and St. Mark Foundation.  It is worthy of mention that the Society work and its support of Coptic Studies was kindly recognized during the Congress.

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a.  COEPA:  The Society is continuing its cooperation with COEPA to promote and distribute their excellent products in the US, which is related to our work.  Of their three audio titles; only St. Basil Liturgy and Midnight Psalmody are still available. The Society has granted publication rights to two modules of its Coptic CD to COEPA to include in their newest announced production of a CD-Rom, titled, The Christian Orthodox Reference library (COeRL).  This 2-CD set includes over a 100 volumes of works, essential to students and members of the Coptic Church, including the Coptic Lessons with sound support and the dictionary, published previously by the Society.

b.  Digitized Coptic Microfilms: The entire digitized collection of manuscripts have been installed and is accessible to visitors of the Coptic Center through its new networked system.  The material has already been used to support research of students and scholars worldwide.

c  Image Digitizing:  The Society also is working on digitizing the existing offprint collection, catalogs of Coptic and Christian Arabic manuscripts, and rare volumes dealing with Coptic Studies.  Several thousand images have been scanned so far.  Twelve of these titles have been announced so far.  This work will be made available to scholars and students involved in Coptic Studies and related fields.  It will be furnished in PDF format on CD-ROMs, and will be announced when ready.  Inquiries about other titles not in the published list can be directed to the Society via email or regular mail.

d.  Computers at the Coptic Center:  This year, thanks to the efforts of Mr. Sameh Hanna, we redesigned our network which now includes three servers and 6 workstations.  We also added two new 21-inch monitors and a computer video projector. We currently have the entire set of Digitized microfilms that were done last year installed on the server and is accessible through all the workstations there. The installed DSL high-speed internet connection allow the users to gain access to all the resources on the internet including the new CMCL Internet Journal.  Work is now on-going to host address directly from the Center.

e.  Global Access (Internet):  This year we continued our solid presence on the Internet.  HTTP://WWW.STSHENOUDA.COM is still our current website address.  The traffic grew to an average of about 50,000 hits a month with visitors over the last year from nearly every state in the US as well as over 120 different countries from six continents.

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During the past year the library grew to about 2,300 volumes of material in the different branches of Coptic Studies.  We expanded the library in nearly every section of its more than 14 different sections.  We are continuing the expansion and the development of the library to contain all the necessary references required by those who want to learn and/or to research the Coptic Heritage.  The notable additions were as follows:


a. Coptic Art/Architecture/Inscriptions:  Cledat, J. Le Monastere et le Necropole de Baouit (1999); Cramer, M. Die Totenklage bei Den Kopten (1941); Daoud, N.K. Christian Monuments in Aswan and Nubia (Ar) (2003); De Wald, E.T. The Illustrations in the Mnauscripts of the Septuagint v.3 Psalms and Odes pt.1 Vaticanus Graecus 1927 (1941), pt.2 Vaticanus Graecus 752 (1942); Ernest, H. Tapisseries et Etoffes Coptes. (1924); Fluck C. and G. Vogelsang-Eastwood. Riding Costume in Egypt – Origin and Appearance (2004); Gabra, G. & Z. Skalova. Icons of the Nile Valley. (2004); Gawlikowski, M. & W.A. Daszewski. Polish Archeology in the Miditerranean XIV – Reports 2001 (2002); ___. Polish Archeology in the Miditerranean XIV – Reports 2002 (2003); Hoskins, N.A. The Coptic Tapestry Albums & the Archeologist of Antinoe, Albert Gayet (2004); Shurinova, R. Coptic Textiles: Collection of Coptic Textile. State Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts Moscow (1969); Spenser, A.J. Excavations at El-Ashmunein II The Temple Area (1989).

b. Coptic Bible, Old  & New: Grossouw, W.  The Coptic Version of the Minor Prophets: A Contribution to the Study of th Septuagint (1938); Horner, G. The Coptic Version of the New Testament in the Southern Dialect vol 2,4,5,6,7 (Reprint: 1969); Kenyon, F.G. The Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri, General Description (1933); H-M.Schenke, Papyrus Michigan 3520 And 6868(a) Ecclesiastes, Erster Johannesbrief und Zweiter Petrusbrief in Fayumischen Dialekt (2003); Schleifer.  Sahidische Bibel-Fragments aus British Museum zu London II (1911), III (1914); Schmitz, F-J. Das Verhaltnis der Koptischen zur Griechischen Uberlieferung des Neuen Testaments – Dokumentation und Auswertung der Gesamtmaterialien Beider Traditionen zum Jakobusbrief und den Beiden Petrusbriefen. (2003) K.Schüssler, Biblica Coptica-Die Koptischen Bibletexte Band 3-2 (2003).

c. Coptic Festschrifts and Conference Proceedings: Immerzeel M. & J. van Der Vliet. Coptic Studies on the Threshold of a New Millennium I. Proceedings of the Seventh Internal Congress of Coptic Studies Leiden, 27 August – 2 September 2000. 2 Volumes (2004).

d. Canon Law and Legal Texts: Hunt, A.S. & J.G. Smyly. Tebtunis Papyri III pt.1 Nos. 690-825 (1933); Green, M. A Private Archive of Coptic Letters and Documents (1983); Gauche, W.J. Didymus the Blind – An Educator of the Fourth Century. (1934); Hefele, C.J.  History of the Church Councils v.1 From the Original Documents to the Close of the Council of Nicaea, AD 325 (1894); Keenan, J.C. & J.C. Shelton (Ed). Tebtunis Papyri IV Nos. 1094-1150 (1976); Mina, A.A. Le Nomocanon Du Patriarche Copte Gabriel II Ibn Turayk (1131-1145) [Ar] (1993); Lobel, E. The Oxyrhynchus Papyri v.32 Nos 2617-2653 (1967); Lobel, E. & C.H. Roberts. The Oxyrhynchus Papyri, v.22. Nos 2309-2353 (1954); Sijpesteijn, P.J. Griechische Texte XIIB: Papyri aus Panopolis, 2 vols (1991); Till, W. Erbrechtliche Untersuchungen auf Grund der Koptischen Urkunden (1954).

e. Cataloges of Manuscripts/Bibliographies: Atiya, A.S. Catalogue Raisonne of the Mount Sinai Arabic Manuscripts-Volume I (1970); Boud'hors, A. et al. Pages Chretiennes d'Egypt – Les Manuscrits des Coptes (2004) Clark, K.W. Checklist of Manuscripts in St. Catherine Monastery (1952); Van Der Vliet, J. Catalogue of the Coptic Inscriptions in the Sudan National Museum at Khartoum (I Khartoum Copt) (2003).

f. Coptic Gnosticism & Apocrypha: Gaffron, H-G.  Studien zum Koptischen Philippusevangelium unter Besonderer Berucksichtigung der Sakramente (1969); Layton, B. Coptic Gnostic Chrestomathy – A Selection with Grammatical Analysis and Glossery (2004); Schmidt, C. Gesprache Jesu mit seinen Jungern nach der Aufstehung – Ein Katholisch-Apostolisches Sendschreiben des 2 Jahrhundert (1919).

g. Coptic Hagiography: Delehaye, P. The Legends of the Saints: An Introduction to Hagiography. (1961).

h. Coptic History and Geography: Anonymous, Christianity in Egypt-Letters and Papers Concerning the Coptic Church in Relation to the Church of England during the Primacy of Archbishop Howley 1836-1848 (1883); Bosson, N. & S.H. Aufrere. Egyptes. L' Egyptien et le copte (1999); Kosack, W. Historische Kartenwerk Agyptens (1971); Leeder, The Modern Sons of the Pharoahs (1918); Maspero, J. Histoire des Patriarches d'Alexandrie, Depuis la Mort de l'Empereur Anastase Jusqu'a la Reconciliation des Eglises Jacobites (518-616) (1923); Meinardus, O. Christian Egypt – Ancient and Modern. (1965); Renaudot, E. Historia Patriarcharum Alexandrinorum Jacobitarum. (Reprint:1969); Sterk A. Renouncing the World Yet Leading the Church – The Monk-Bishop in Late antiquity (2004); Watson, C.R. Egypt and the Christian Crusade (1907).

i. Coptic and Other Languages: Mikhail, N. nihoua] nte piws nte ]acpi nremn,/mi. (1893); Raphael, M. Coptic-Arabic-English Dictionary of the Coptic Liturgies and Gospels (2002); ___. The Four Gospels, Alexandrian Coptic Version (2002).

j. Coptic Literature/Patristics: Athanasius, Bp.  Later Treatises of St. Athanasius, Archbishop of Alexandria (1881); Arnes, T.D.  Athanasius & Constantius – Theology and Politics in the Constantinian Empire (1993); Binder, G. & L. Liesenborghs. Didymos der Blinde, Kommentar zum Ecclesiastes VI (1969); Dragas, G.D.  St. Cyril of Alexandria's Teaching on the Priesthood (2003); Emmel, S.L.  Shenoute's Literary Corpus 2 vols. (2004); Griffith, S. Yahya ibn `di- The Reformation of Morals (2002); Gronewald, M. Didymos der Blinde, Kommentar zum Ecclesiastes V (1979); Hill, R. C. (Transl) St. John Chrysostom – Old Testament Homilies, v.2 Homilies on Isaiah and Jeremiah, v.3 Homilies on the Obscurity of the Old Testament, Homilies on the Psalms. (2003); Ishak, Fr. S.M. & Y.N. Youssef.  Coptic Literature Heritage [Ar] (2003); Jones, P. R. The Epistle of Jude as xpounded by the Fathers (2001); Koen, L. The Saving Passion – Incarnational and Soteriological Thought in Cyril of Alexandria's Commentary on the Gospel of John (1991); Kramer, J. Didymos der Blinde, Kommentar zum Ecclesiastes III (1970) Liesenborghs, L. Didymus der Blinde: Kommentar zum Ecclesiastes, Lage 22 und 23 des Tura-Papyri (1965); Rossi, F. Trascrizione con Traduz. Ital. Di Due … (1888); Sidarus, A.Y.  Ibn ar-Rahibs Leben und werk. Ein Koptisch-Arabische Enzyklopadist des 7/13 Jahrhunderts (1975).

k.Coptic Liturgy: Bacchiocchi, S. From Sabbath to Sunday – A Historical Investigation. (1977); Mar Mina Monastery. Kitab al-Baskha al Muqadassah, 4 parts [Ar] (2000); Renaudot, E.  Liturgiarum Orientalium Collectio In Qua Continentu (1716); Swainson, C.A.  The Greek Liturgies Chiefly from Original Authorities (Reprint:1971); Wustenfeld. Synaxarium – Das ist Heiligen-Kalender der Coptischen Christen. 2 volumes (1879).

l. Coptic Monasticism: Gregorius, Bp.  The Muharraq Monastery – Its History, Description, Contents (Reprint 1992); Harmless, W. Desert Christians: An Introduction to the Literature of Early Monasticism (2004); Meinardus, O. Monks and Monasteries of the Egyptian Desert (1961); Tousson, Prince O. Etude sur le Wadi Natroun, ses Moines et ses Couvents (1931).

m. Periodicals: Journal of Coptic Studies vol. 5 (2003), vol 6 (2004); Coptic Church Review vol 24-4 (2003), vol.25-(1-3) (2004).

n. Coptic Theology: Van Lantschoot, A. Les "Questions de Theodore" Texte Sahidique Recensions Arabes et Ethiopienne (1957).


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The Coptic MiniConferences

The Society continued the program of limited one-day MiniConferences at the Coptic Center on a quarterly basis.  Due to the busy conference schedule for this year only one was held in December 2003.  It included two short presentations on various subjects, and one single major presentation on the writings of St. Shenouda.  There was an accompanying Library Book exhibit for Coptic Liturgical Manuals.  Between 15-17 persons attended these meetings.

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The Advanced Coptic Seminar, continued its work primarily on selections from the Bohairic text of the Book of Genesis.  Seven different sessions were either concluded or are still being held at the Coptic Center.  Currently two Intermediate Coptic classes are being held along with a workshop on the Coptic Liturgy.  Also a group from UCLA, studying Sahidic Coptic, has been meeting at the Coptic Center since March 2001.  The group includes three adult students and the instructor is Dr. Monica Bontty of California State University at Fullerton.  The instruction emphasizes the Egyptian background of the Coptic language.

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a.  Newsletter - Subscriber's Edition:  Four issues of volume seven of the Subscriber's Edition (volume 10 overall) were published and mailed to our members and other selected individuals throughout the world.  The last issue included a full bibliography of all the articles published in the Newsletter, 10 years of publication.  This publication will be replaced with new quarterly periodical, titled St. Shenouda Coptic Quarterly (SSCQ).  The first issue is scheduled for October 2004.

b.  Coptica:  The second and third volumes of Coptica were published and distributed to members and subscribers.  It included the proceedings of the Wadi al-Natrun Symposium (February 2002).  The two contained 16 papers that were presented at the Symposium.  Articles from both Coptica and its predecessor St. Shenouda Annual Bulletin were included in many of the bibliographies distributed during the Paris Coptic Congress.

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Prepared by Hany N. Takla 9/12/2006

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