Fancy Dress at Thrikkunnath

Written By: on Mar 17th, 2012 and filed under Columns, Features, Opinions.


Once again we the MOC faithful have been deceived by the very people who were supposed to play umpire at Thrikkunnath seminary.

A 10-point charter of do’s and don’ts were drawn up by the district authorities of Ernakulam headed by the District Collector and signed by the representatives of both the MOC and the Puthencruz Society. But as usual, the Jacobites, led by its Chief Celebrant in person, broke most of these conditions with impunity.

While 10 minutes each were allowed for the Heads of the two sides to offer prayers (only ‘dhoopa prarthana’, and no Holy Qurbana), the Jacobites took around 15 minutes and claimed to have conducted some sort of a hotchpotch H.Q. A few minutes were taken to dress up (or ‘undress’?) by changing the disguise of His Beatitude. The black cassock was removed and, lo and behold, there he was in supposedly sacred vestments! Those watching the video clip on India Vision TV channel were treated to a first-rate fancy dress item taking place right in front of the tombs of 4 Holy Fathers of the Church!

Another stipulation was that only 10 persons would be allowed at a time, but the ‘Shreshtan’ was accompanied by a team of around 20 persons including a few Bishops. No camera or mobile phones were to be taken inside, but the Sabha Secretary, Thampu Thukalan, could be seen taking out a camera phone from inside his shirt where it was concealed while coming inside. Though a couple of policemen on duty tried to dissuade him from using the camera phone, he simply refused to budge and went on shooting the proceedings nonchalantly. All the while, the District Collector was very much present there!

But the biggest ‘spectacle’ was yet to come. After the exit of ‘Shreshtan’ and his minions, we could see the District Collector himself coming to the exit point and lending a helping hand to zip up the bag in which the vestments used by the ‘Shreshtan’ were packed to be carried away. He is then seen directing a staff member to carry the bag for safe-keeping.

I am not the least surprised by the stealth, subterfuge and felony used by the ‘Shreshtan’ and his equally ‘shreshta’( meaning: eminent) minions, because the long and ‘cherished’ history of these Antioch worshipers is one of law-breaking, falsehood, treachery , intimidation and violence. But what I am surprised is at the blatant violation of the official tripartite agreement by the chief patron of the said agreement, namely, the District Collector himself. Clearly, the District Collector had acted in a partisan manner by not only conniving at the breaking of the law but also even lending a helping hand to the law-breakers. They may have succeeded in betraying the MOC faithful but cannot escape the judgment of the all-seeing and all-knowing God Almighty.

But the question that begs an answer is whether a District Collector, or any government official for that matter, would have dared to act in such a one-sided and treacherous manner without the green signal from the political leadership in power? Therefore, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy’s complicity in the matter is very much suspected here, whatever his apologists might say otherwise. It may be recalled that he had given a false assurance to the Supreme Head of the MOC, H.H. the Catholicos, on the Kolenchery church issue that the court order would be implemented if a mutual solution is not reached in 15 days. Now more than 6 months have passed and nothing has happened.

Why is that the MOC is cheated and denied justice again and again? Why is that truth is not prevailing? Why is that we are taken for granted by the powers that be? My own answer to these is that we refuse to stand united. We refuse to stand as disciplined soldiers behind the Head of our Church. We stubbornly refuse to make our voices be heard. We refuse to come out of our cozy environs and, instead, revel in making potshots at our Church leaders. Our love for the Malankara Orthodox Church is superficial and not deep rooted. We refuse to acknowledge its richness and greatness. We are not ready to make sacrifices for this mother Church of ours. Hence the sufferings and the bleeding by this Apostolic Church of ours.

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3 Responses for “Fancy Dress at Thrikkunnath”

  1. Alex Mathew says:

    Every religion teaches people to respect God, holy places and holy practices. They are not to be taken lightly. We can find references in many scriptures, not just our Holy Bible, to support and substantiate this matter. What is most deplorable in the case at hand is that the so-proclaimed head of a church is the architect, party and leader to such acts of desecration of a holy place and the most holy of Orthodox Christian Sacraments. We have seen video-graphic evidence of this. It is the Lord’s word: “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain”.

    The Orthodox Christians consider Church to be holy. As a faithful member of the Malankara Orthodox Church I find myself facing a serious problem. It so happens that our Holy Church established some historical relationship with the Syrian Orthodox Church which unfortunately took us through some shameful and expensive court cases, and has led us now to some existing feuds with the group proclaimed as Jacobite Syrian Church whose leader exhorts and leads its members to shameful lawlessness and unholy behaviors. I find that any association with this group, and even being involved with them in legal cases, is destructive to our image as part of the Orthodox Christendom. What can we do about this? I prayerfully plead that our church leaders seriously think about this during this period of the Great Fast. We cannot let our Orthodox image continue to be tarnished by this association. I believe that the Lord would want us to be involved in more important works to further His Kingdom. Enough is enough!

  2. Malankara Orthodox church is suffering for false beautification of The Patriarch of Antioch as the successor of St.Peter. The church at Antioch was founded by the Jews who deserted Jerusalem after the Martyrdom pf St.Stephanos. St.Peter never had anything to do with the Church of Antioch.
    The Lord has not made our church as part of Antioch or Rome.but as the Holy church of His most trusted and only Apostle who went to the extremities of the earth lighting thr Gospel powered by the Holy Spirit.
    Let the Truth be taught to the members of the Church. TRUTH SHALL MAKE US FREE.

  3. Time and again, Jacobites and Orthodox factionalists claim “injustice” taking place because the government, court rulings, and the like fail them. This has been going on for decades and I question why we – who should be one – seek “justice” from the courts and government politcians who clearly do not have either Jacobite nor Orthodox faithfuls best interest at heart but rather see each group as cash cows for their coffers. On the social media frontier, time and again I find the sheep or should I say “lambs being led to slaughter” who are in fact the Internet trolls and cyber bullies of the conflict insult and degrade one another with words, post vitriol and venom on various pages on the specious arguments for and against one faction over the other. This blatant disregard for things deemed holy is no different than a priest/shepherd performing what resembles a Holy Qurbana or even bishops and priests taking to the streets. That being said, I’m sick of it all. I’ve had enough. I know very well there are Jacobites and Orthodox with level-heads who sit in a silent majority simply going to church each Sunday taking part in daily Christian living and maintain sincere respect, love, and have no qualms participating in Holy Qurbana at a church that the loud and obnoxious lambs to the slaughter see as the enemy. Is this really what our forefathers sought for us? What are the lamentations and prayers of our respected holy fathers, priests, and family worth to us? What sense does it make to continue trying to seek solution from the laws of man who is flawed, when we have been given the laws through The Word of God through our Lord Jesus Christ? Who in the senior leadership – Jacobite and Orthodox priests, lay-leaders, bishops, etc – have the courage to speak up for the silent majority? All it takes is extending an olive branch to the other side and even those most vitriolic, bitter, and hard-hearted have no other choice but to recognize the Triune God is who we must bow down to.

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