Pope Abba Gabriel V

edited December 2014 in Coptic Orthodox Church
Can anyone lead me to sources outlining the reforms of Gabriel V and perhaps explain why they took place?


  • I really don't know much about this topic. But I do remember hearing a little bit about this pope from one of Albeir's lessons. It's the third one on this page (long annual tai shouri). http://www.copticheritage.org/classes/the_divine_liturgy_hymns
  • I've heard that one too.

    I was told by a priest that Gabriel V moved the offertory from its original place (after the Liturgy of the Word) to its current place. Too be honest the old way seems to make more sense. I was wondering of anyone had confirmation of this change occurring.
  • Oh yes I have that. Or I know where it can be found because I don't have access to all of my sources at the moment. It's in one of the few (or maybe the only) translated english books by Abouna Athanasius Iskander. I am looking for it now.
  • Here it is. It's one of the first few sections. Just use ctrl + f and search "simply defined." 
  • Thanks a lot man. But why can't I access this server that it was on?
  • Do you mean the original site? If so, try this: http://stmary-ottawa.org/index.php.
    If not, explain haha
  • edited December 2014
    Pope Gabriel V, eighty-eighth patriarch of the See of Saint Mark
    (1409-1427 AD). Interestingly, Pope Gabriel's life is fairly well documented. (You won't find anything online or on Wiki). The best information is found in the Coptic Encyclopedia. I want to quote one small part to show you how hard Pope Gabriel's papacy was:
    "The notable Muslim historian al-MAQRIZI (1364-1441), a
    contemporary of Gabriel V, summarized the life of the patriarch:
    After having spent some time as one of the many functionaries he
    rose in the ranks until he reached the patriarchal seat. The Christians
    were never so unhappy as during his reign.
    He himself was subjected, on several occasions, to prejudicial
    treatment and humiliation. He had to go in the streets on foot. When he 
    presented himself for an audience with the Sultan or his emirs, he was
    left standing. He was so impoverished that, on more than one
    occasion, he was obliged to go from village to village imploring the
    generosity of the Christian population. He was unable to obtain aid
    from them since they themselves were in a state of poverty and
    In days gone by, the Abyssinian kings sent annually considerable
    amounts of money to the patriarch of Alexandria. During Gabriel's
    reign, however, they renounced this custom. They had very little
    consideration for this prelate who had once been a functionary and had
    thus, in their opinion, contributed to the vexations exercised against
    his own people.
    In short, I have never seen any patriarch who was less esteemed
    than this one and whose pontificate was less honoured."

    Regarding the topic at hand, I will quote this section from the Coptic Encyclopedia:
    "Gabriel V left only one written work, the Ordo (Arabic, Kitab
    ). He thereby reorganized the liturgy of the church, giving it
    the definitive form that it currently retains. Without creating or
    modifying anything in the body of the liturgy, he assembled all its
    elements and traditions with minute precision and indicated all
    gestures and prayers of the liturgical offices.

    Gabriel's method is instructive, being set forth identically in the
    two manuscripts that contain parts of the
    Ordo... He studied a
    number of extant older
    ordos, lists of daily offices and feasts,
    comparing them and collating a single ordo that integrated the
    maximum substance of their original elements. On Sunday, 3 May
    1411, at the Church of ABU SAYFAYN in Old Cairo, he assembled 
    the priests, notables, and deacons of the entire Christian community
    and submitted the new
    Ordo to them. The assembly gave its
    unanimous approval to this
    Ordo and the patriarch consequently
    decreed its exclusive use in all Coptic churches." 

    I am working on getting Pope Gabriel's book (Arabic) with an Italian translation. I'll get back to you all with more information.

    Is there something specific you are looking for in Pope Gabriel's book?
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