Al-Azhar Al-Sharif Releases a Ruling on the Faith of “Youssef/Shenouda,” a Child – Sky News Arabia

After the controversy that arose among the Egyptian street, Al-Azhar Al-Sharif issued a fatwa on the religion of a foundling who was adopted by a Christian family after he was found in front of an Egyptian church in the north of the capital, Cairo.

And in Posted on FacebookAl-Azhar International Center for Electronic Fatwa said: “A question was sent to the Al-Azhar International Center for Fatwa to inquire about the religion of the child who was found inside a church..

And the answer:

  • In this issue, the scholars have held multiple opinions, and the one that Al-Azhar tends to among these opinions is what a group of Hanafi gentlemen went to, which is that if a foundling child is found in a church and the one who finds it is not a Muslim, then he is on the religion of the one who found him..
  • This is what the Hanafi masters stipulated in their books: “If he is found in one of the villages of the people of the Dhimmis, or in a sale or church, he is a Dhimmi.” [الهداية في شرح بداية المبتدي 2/ 415]”


What is the story of the child Shenouda

  • The child Youssef or Shenouda, who was a few days old, was found in front of the Church of the Virgin, Mother of Light, north of Cairo.
  • After church consultation, the child was adopted by a Coptic family, since they had no children, and an official birth certificate was drawn up for him in the name of the foster parents.
  • Fearing that the child would inherit from his adoptive parents, she filed a complaint with the Public Prosecutor to challenge his attribution to the foster family.
  • The complaint is that the child has been kidnapped and that the mother and father are not the biological parents.
  • The couple and the child underwent a DNA test, and it was proven that he was not biologically related to them.
  • The child was placed in an orphanage and named “Youssef” instead of Shenouda.
  • A new birth certificate was issued for the child with a new quadruple name, and he was named Bassem Youssef, instead of Shenouda.
  • The child’s religion on the birth certificate was changed from Christianity to Islam
  • After 6 months of judicial sessions, the Egyptian Administrative Court decided not to have jurisdiction over the case of the foundling child.
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It is mentioned that according to Egyptian law, any foundling child of unknown parents is considered a “natural Muslim”, and that sponsoring an orphan child in the Egyptian constitution is not in any way considered adoption.

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