Changes in Coptic Liturgical Texts

edited December 1969 in Coptic Orthodox Church
Recently I came across a speech from a Russian Orthodox Metropolitan that included this paragraph:

Several years ago I came across a short article in a journal of the Coptic Church where it stated that this Church had decided to remove prayers for those held in hell from its service books, since these prayers “contradict Orthodox teaching”. Puzzled by this article, I decided to ask a representative of the Coptic Church about the reasons for this move. Recently I had the possibility to do so, and a Coptic Metropolitan replied that the decision was made by his Synod because, according their official doctrine, no prayers can help those in hell. I told the metropolitan that in the liturgical practice of the Russian Orthodox Church and other local Orthodox Churches there are prayers for those held in hell, and that we believe in their saving power. This surprised the Metropolitan, and he promised to study this question in more detail.

Here is a link to the entire speech:

My question is, does anyone know what changes by the Holy Synod he was referencing? Or maybe even the journal he is talking about that I could reference myself? I'm assuming it may be funeral prayers but I have very little to go on. If anyone knows more about this, I would love to hear it.




  • He is talking about the prayers for the Kneeling Service or Sagda, done on Pentecost.
  • Thanks for the quick reply! Someone I spoke to before had guess that it may have been the sagda prayers.

    Do we know how far back these removed prayers date? I suppose what my main point is that I tend to agree with the Russian metropolitan that liturgical text is used to echo theological beliefs and I am wondering if the passage taken out because it was erroneously added in at one point, or what exactly the circumstances were.

    Do you (or anyone else) have access to the former sagda prayers that I can compare the current ones too?

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