Coptic Church Walks Back Its #MeToo Moment; SNAP Stands with Survivor
For immediate release: December 7, 2021
Less than two years ago the Coptic Orthodox Church experienced its #MeToo moment after a young activist survivor exposed a child-abusing cleric on social media. The priest was removed subsequently from ministry, and the Church reportedly “vowed to eradicate inappropriate behavior.”
Yet when that same survivor, Sally Zakhari, was recently invited to speak at a Coptic parish in Toronto, Pope Tawadros II inexplicably shut down her presentation, SNAP proudly stands with Sally and we have a message for Pope Tawadros: You cannot “eradicate” clergy sexual abuse if you are afraid to even allow people to talk about it.
We hope that the Pope’s ban will backfire and that “The Road to Discipleship: Rediscovering Christ through Trauma” will ultimately be heard. The intrepid Sally reports that the action is sparking a backlash from the Coptic community and that the search for a new venue for the talk is in progress.
SNAP knows from experience that the voices of survivors can and will lead the way to true change in recalcitrant churches. We think that day of reckoning is coming to the Coptic Church. #letherspeak #copticsurvivor #copticsurvivormovement
CONTACT: Melanie Sakoda, SNAP Survivor Support Coordinator/SNAP Orthodox Leader ([email protected], 925-708-6175), Michael McDonnell, SNAP Communications Director ([email protected], 267-261-0578), Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director ([email protected], 517-974-9009)