SVS Press publishes first scholarly biography of influential Coptic patriarch

St. Vladimir’s Seminary (SVS) Press has published the first scholarly biography of the desert hermit who became a most unlikely patriarch of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, Pope Kyrillos VI (1902–1971).

The biography, titled, A Silent Patriarch, by Fr. Daniel Fanous, has been well received among the Coptic community and others, already selling in large quantities during a brief pre-order period leading up to the book’s release.

“Kyrillos VI…is a figure of great spiritual stature who was immersed in the depths of monastic life and in a life of unceasing prayer,” said the current Coptic patriarch, Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria. “I commend Rev. Dr. Daniel Fanous for this important study, which I consider a scholarly and outstanding addition to the history of our Coptic Orthodox Church."

Until now, the details of Pope Kyrillos VI’s life have remained largely hidden, despite his enduring popularity among Coptic Christians. As patriarch, Kyrillos inherited a bleeding church, one confronted by political Islamism, an indifferent Muslim president, and the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood. Silent in the face of persecution, mockery, and criticism, Kyrillos stood at the head of a nearly impossible spiritual revolution. But by the time he reposed, everything had changed.

In this lucid biography, Fr. Daniel Fanous traces Kyrillos’ life from childhood, drawing upon hundreds of letters and sources never before seen, detailing Kyrillos’ unusual method of ecclesial reform, which speaks enduringly to the uncertainties of the present age. This is the story of Kyrillos VI, a most unlikely patriarch, a silent urban recluse.

A Silent Patriarch may be purchased at SVSPress.com or by calling 800-204-BOOK (2665).

About the Author

Rev. Dr Daniel Fanous is dean and lecturer in theology & biblical studies at St. Cyril’s Coptic Orthodox Theological College in Sydney, Australia. He is the author of The Person of the Christ and Taught by God: Making Sense of the Difficult Sayings of Jesus (coming soon to SVS Press).