The late Malankara Metropolitan Mor Athanasius Paulose of the Jacobite Syrian Christian Church, known as the `defender of faith' and the `Valiya Thirumeni of Aluva,' was canonized as saint by the Patriarch, Moran Mar Ignatius Zakka I, head of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church.
The announcement was made by the Patriarch at the Patriarchal Cathedral at Damascus and Catholicose Mor Baselious Thomas I also made the announcement at the Mar Sabor Aphroth Jacobite Syrian Church, Akapparambu, the parish church of the saint on 20 August 2004.
In a press statement Catholicose said, that the announcement revealed the recognition given to the members of the Syrian Orthodox Church in India by the Holy See of Antioch and All the East.
The Mor Athanasius Paulose, Valiya Thirumeni was born on 23rd Jan 1869 to 'Mathai' of Ayyambillil Thekkekarayil family and `Anna' of Kuttikatt Painadath family of Nayathodu, Akaparambu, Angamali. He was christened as PAULOSE at the ancient Akaparambu Mor Sabor Mor Apfroth church. Thirumeni grew up in the Painadath house at Akaparambu, as his mother being the only child of her parents had inherited the property. Hence most of the people recognize Valiya Thirumeni as one from the Kuttikatt Pynadathu family.
After the demise of Mor Kurillos Paulose (Kochuparambil), Mor Athanasius Thirumeni became the Malankara Metropolitan in 1918. A year later on 26th Sep 1919, Malankara Sunday School Association (M.S.S.A) was formed at a meeting held at the Piravom Valiya church under the guidance of Mor Athanasius Thirumeni. His Grace was then chosen as the first president of the Association.
The announcement had been made prior to the apostolic visit of the Patriarch to India from September 20. He is the second Indian to be raised to the status of sainthood after Geevarghese Mor Gregorious (Parumala Thirumeni).
Biogrphy of Mor Athanasius Paulosehttp://www.syriacchristianity.org/bio/ValiyaThirumeni.htmhttp://sor.cua.edu/Personage/Malankara/MAthanasiusPPynadath.html