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College of Cardinals

Biographical notes

[Updated: 18.01.2013]


Notice: the biographical notes are only a working instrument for the press.


NAGUIB H.B. Card. Antonios


H. B. Antonios Naguib, Patriarch emeritus of Alexandria of the Copts, was born on 18 March 1935 in Minya, Egypt. At the age of nine he entered the minor seminary, and continued his studies at the major seminary, first at Tanta and then at Maadi, outside Cairo. In 1955, he was sent to Rome to study a the Pontifical Urbaniana University. He was ordained a priest on 30 October 1960 in Minya.

In 1962, he returned to Rome and completed a licentiate in theology and in 1964 a licentiate in Scripture. He taught Scripture from 1964 to 1977 at the Maadi seminary.

On 26 July 1977 he was elected bishop of Minya and was ordained on 9 September 1977. Committed to the ideals of religious formation, he introduced many reforms and opened new schools for religious education.

In 2002, for health reasons, he took a pause from his pastoral activities until 30 March 2006 when he was elected Patriarch of Alexandria of the Copts.

He was head of the Synod of the Catholic Coptic Church and President of the Assembly of the Catholic Hierarchy of Egypt.

On 18 March 2010 he presented his resignation from the office of Patriarch but the assembly unanimously asked him to continue despite having reached the age of retirement.

He was nominated Relator General of the Special Assembly for the Middle East of the Synod of Bishops (10-24 October 2010), "The Catholic Church in the Middle East: Communion and Witness. ‘Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul’ (Acts 4:32)."

Patriarch emeritus of Alexandria of the Copts, 15 January 2013.

Created and proclaimed Cardinal by Benedict XVI in the consistory of 20 November 2010.

Member of:

  • Congregation for the Oriental Churches;
  • Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People;
  • Special Council for the Middle East of the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops.



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