KOTTAYAM: H. H Baselius Marthoma Mathews II after breathing last at 5:15 PM at Devalokam Aramana on 26 January is now on the last leg of his journey to his hallowed tomb at Sasthamkota. The deceased soul bid farewell to Kottayam remaining silent with closed eyes and lips spending more than 4 hours at Mar Elia Cathedral. No exaggeration, the whole of the society converged at Elia Cathedral without caste and creed to pay their last respects making all the 4 hours most precious and rewarding for everyone.
From then on, one has to see to believe- the journey from Kottayam to Sasthamkota, the seat of the final rest. A Bava, a spiritual leader, a gentleman bishop who was always on the wings to celebrate as many holy masses, to bless as many marriages, as many baptisms, to conduct as many funerals, to conduct as many programs, to participate in as many functions, to bless as many people, to traverse as many miles as possible on foot and otherwise is (now at this point of time 9:15), slowly but virtually inching his way to his last resting place.
The journey which started from Kottayam at 3:10, reached Chengannur at 7:45, taking more than four and a half hours. The mortal remains of Bava in cortege is receiving the last goodbyes and goodnights from the people. People cutting across religions and other affiliations are waiting patiently, hours and hours; to have a last look at their loving Angel Achen turned Bava (I could have a glimpse of it as I traveled ahead of the cortege). Every pathway, every junction proudly and solemnly holds aloft the big sized photographs of HH Marthoma Mathews II disseminating grace everywhere to everyone.
Now it is night. Still on either side of the road, faithfuls wait patiently for the cortege to arrive. In front of the churches, priests and all other church members are in huge numbers singing grieved hymns breaking the silence of the night. Young and old are now, on either side of the road with lighted candles, not knowing how many more hours they are to wait. At Paranthil, near Adoor, I could find a big ground lighted with candles, people sitting around singing hymns and reading the Bible. What a touching and poignant sight. Even stones are taking tongues! Yes Angel achen will come this way, but not to repeat it anymore.
Now is its 10:30. The cortege just passed Adoor.
It is indeed an accomplished journey which every Orthodox man along with his other friends will sustain in memory for years to come. Let us wait…