Allan Walter CAMPBELL died on 29 January, 2007.
Allan Campbell was a devoted son of the Scottish Episcopal Church and as a solicitor he was able to place his legal skills at the service of his church. For many years he served as Chancellor of the Diocese of Moray, Ross and Caithness during the episcopate of Bishop George Sessford, only retiring when the Bishop felt compelled to resign his see in 1993. As the latter was the acknowledged leader of the Catholics in the Episcopal Church his ministry coincided with a number of controversies, especially the battle over the ordination of women to the priesthood. If Bishop Sessford found that “ecclesiastical controversies with never to his taste” (obituary, The Independent, 27 July 1996) the same was certainly not true of Chancellor Campbell, who pursued all disputes with an exacting thoroughness and determination. Although certainly not an Anglophobe, he attributed many of the woes of the Episcopal Church to its importation of too many English clergy poisoned by liberalism and ignorant of Scotland’s Episcopalian heritage just as he also mused on the problems caused by Presbyterian Scots having infiltrated the Church of England ! His trenchant powers of discernment, sharp wit and acerbic observations laid bare the facile posturing of progressive bishops whom he despised for the ruin they made of the church he loved.
To his friends and family he was a warm and kindly companion with a keen sense of humour and a relish for legal or clerical anecdotes, recounted with a deep chuckle as he took a large pinch of snuff. Diligently supported in all things by his wife, Margaret, intellectually his equal but with a more highly developed sense of domestic order and a tendency to temper her comments with greater charity he amassed a formidable collection of books and papers on matters ecclesiastical and Scottish. His encyclopædic knowledge of historical, legal and ecclesiastical subjects, enabled him to support and collaborate with many scholars and brought him a large international correspondence. He shared this knowledge freely with those who sought his help and went to extraordinary ends in the painstaking details he placed at their disposal. When Thomas Jay Williams published Priscilla Lydia Sellon (1950), the biography of the restorer of religious life in the English Church, he received from Allan Campbell a stream of letters over more than a decade which not only amplified his research but led him to remote sources and forgotten archives yielding hitherto unpublished material. It is hardly surprising that T.J. Williams insisted on Allan Campbell being named as co-author when he published The Park Village Sisterhood in 1965. Similarly Peter Anson’s The Call of the Cloister (1964) was revised and edited by Allan Campbell.
Among his many correspondents was the late Metropolitan Georgius of Glastonbury, through whom the young Abba Seraphim, then still a deacon, was introduced to him and found him an invaluable and generous mentor in his early research. Allan also proved a good friend to the Eastern Orthodox community in Edinburgh and he welcomed the establishment and consolidation of other communities with traditional Christian standards whilst mourning the forsaking of his own rich heritage.
Dr. Isaac FANOUS Yossef, Head of the Department of Coptic Art at the Institute of Coptic Studies, died on 14 January 2007 aged 87 years.
Born on 19 December 1919, he studied at the Faculty of Applied Arts at Cairo University in 1937 and subsequently at the Higher School of Applied Art in Cairo, 1938-1942. He pursued his studies in the department of arts at the Institute of Education, graduating in 1946. Fanous was one of the first students of the Institute of Coptic Studies when it was founded in 1954 and he obtained his doctorate in 1958. His two-year study grant in the Louvre in the mid-1960s was a significant point in his career as he took the opportunity, while in France, to study icon painting under Léonid Ouspensky (1902-1987) at L’Institut Saint Denis, where the Rector was the renowned theologian, Vladimir Lossky. Ouspensky taught here for 40 years and through his work and his published writings, especially his monumental
Theology of the Icon, played a seminal role in the revival of traditional Orthodox iconography. This would provide the inspiration for Fanous to develop a style that was to become the new face of Coptic iconography in the mid-20th century. His Neo-Coptic style drew inspiration from Egyptian history, using Pharaonic, Graeco-Roman and ancient Coptic iconography, especially those from the Fayoum and Bawit, and included many specifically Egyptian motifs, such as the Giza Pyramids and the Pharos at Alexandria as well as local flora and fauna. The style and canons of proportion as well as the artistic vocabulary and symbol system of Neo-Coptic Art owes much to Ancient Egyptian art. Each gesture has a precise significance and colours carry symbolic meaning. Designs are uncluttered, free of unnecessary elements and decorations, presenting the viewer with the essential information to understand and experience the icon at a deeper level of consciousness.
Fanous headed the Coptic Art department at the Institute of Coptic Studies in Cairo, where he trained a number of other Coptic artists from outside Egypt among whom is Dr. Stephane Rene, the London-based iconographer and lecturer in Christian Art who is associated with the Prince’s School of the Traditional Arts and the Temenos Academy.
He and his apprentices painted the major frescoes which adorn the church of St George at Heliopolis, the mosaics in the crypt of St Mark’s Cathedral in Cairo and the stained glass windows of the Coptic Catholic Cathedral in Medinat Nasr.. His masterpieces can be seen in churches and monasteries in Egypt, and also in Coptic churches abroad: in America (especially in Los Angeles), in Canada, and in the Vatican in Rome and in London where in 1977-78 he painted the icons in St Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Church in Allen Street, Kensington.
Father Bishoy Boushra MAKKAR, Hegoumenos, of St. Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Church, Allen Street, Kensington, London, died on 28 April 2007 aged 67 years.
Ordained priest in 1972, he was the first of those ordained by Pope Shenouda and remained one of his loyal disciples. In 1978 he joined Father Anthonios Thabet Shenouda, to serve as one of the priests of St. Mark’s Church, Kensington, the “mother church” of the Coptic community in the United Kingdom. Supported by Tasoni Nabila, he accepted the responsibility of ministering to the Copts in the United Kingdom, where they now brought up their three and, only recently, rejoiced to see their first grandchild. In 1989 he underwent one of the first liver transplants but continued to minister unceasingly to the congregation. He was also a regular member of various inter-church groups, including the Council of Oriental Orthodox Churches.
The funeral service at St. Mark’s took place on 7 May and was officiated by Archbishop Athanasios of the Syrian Orthodox Church with Bishop Antony and Bishop Angaelos from the Coptic Church. Abba Seraphim was unable to attend, but was represented by Fathers Sergius Scott & Seraphim Mina, who joined the many other clergy and faithful in mourning Father Bishoy. After the service, his body, accompanied by Bishop Angaelos and Father Antonios, was taken to Cairo for burial.