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Pope Shenouda III was the 117th Pope and Patriarch of the Church of Alexandria. His episcopate lasted 40 years, four months, and 4 days from 14 November 1971 until his death on 17 March 2012. His official title was Pope of Alexandria and the Patriarch of All Africa on the Holy Apostolic See of Saint Mark the Evangelist of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria. He was also the head of the Holy Synod of the Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate of Alexandria. He was a conservative figure within the Church; and was also respected within the Muslim community. Born Nazeer Gayed Roufail on 3 August 1923, he became a monk in 1954 under the name Father Antonios the Syrian after joining the Syrian Monastery of the Ever-Virgin Mary the Theotokos. In 1958, he was elevated to the priesthood. In 1962, Pope Cyril VI summoned Fr. Antonios and consecrated him General Bishop for Christian Education and as Dean of the Coptic Orthodox Theological Seminary, whereupon he assumed the name Shenouda, which was the name of the Coptic saint, Shenoute the Archimandrite, as well as two previous popes: Shenouda I and Shenouda II. Saint Shenoute the Archimandrite was instrumental in flourishing the Monastic Movement, active in Ecumenical issues, a noted Church teacher and writer, and an Egyptian Leader. Pope Shenouda III maintained the legacy of the name he carried. (via Freebase)