30 Oct 2012

Shortlist for new Coptic pope

5:43 am on 30 October 2012

Coptic Christians in Egypt are to pick a shortlist of candidates on Monday, before a blindfolded child selects a new Pope next month.

The vote is to choose a successor to Pope Shenouda III, who died in March.

A council of about 2400 people will vote in Monday's ballot on a shortlist announced by the church on 13 October, which comprises two bishops and three monks.

The draw will be held on 4 November and the new pope will be the 118th to lead the church.

The Coptic Church has about 16 million members worldwide. About half of them live in Egypt, where they are a religious minority.