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Documents related to the division in the Indian Church

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Mor Ephrem:
I do not wish to get involved in a race to copy and paste texts, especially since I will not be copying and pasting, but typing them out on my own, with necessary formatting.  However, I have to wait for the shower, so I will start typing a relevant account from Cheriyan's book, with two other documents.  I am attempting if at all possible to reproduce the text as it appears, including typos.   

From C.V. Cheriyan, Orthodox Christianity in India: A History of the Malankara Orthodox Church AD 52-2002 (Kottayam, Kerala, India: Academic Publishers, July 2003), pp. 373-6

Mutual Acceptance, 1958

The judgment of September 1958 (Phil: I really don't want to type this all out, but at the risk of controversy, I will say that the judgement was basically an appeal by the Patriarchal faction of a case [won by the Catholicos faction] based on "fresh evidence") while endorsing the position of the Catholicos party, dealt a heavy blow on the pretensions of the Patriarch party and the effort of the party to foist the temporal authority of the Patriarch of Antioch on the Malankara Church.  The Metropolitans of the Patriarch party found that although they were consecrated by the Patriarch himself, they could not have any administrative power over any of the dioceses in the Malankara Church having not been elected by the Malankara Suriyani Christian Association.  The Patriarch party also found itself under the legal requirement to pay the entire court expenses of the Catholicos party amounting to a few lakhs of rupees.  The petition of the Patriarch party praying to review the judgment was also rejected.  The emerging situation necessitated the revival of peace parleys.

The Metropolitans on the Patriarch party realising the implications of the judgment of September 1958 in regard to their own administrative functions appraised the Patriarch Mar Yakoub III of the situation prevailing on the Malankara Church, and the Patriarch accordingly in his letter No. 447 dated 9 December 1958 sent from Homs, Syria to Mar Julius extended recognition to the Catholicos Moran Mar Baselius Geevarghese II.

The Catholicos party also was in favour of the realisation of a lasting peace in the Malankara Church.  The receipt of the Patriarch's letter extending recognition to the Catholicos was followed by prolonged discussions on the modalities of mutual acceptance and exchange of documents.  The terms of reconciliation and procedure for the exchange of letters were finalised at the final round of talks held on 16 December 1958.  Accordingly, the Catholicos and all the Metropolitans of the Catholicos party except Pathrose Mar Ostathios and all the Metropolitans on the Patriarch side except Mar Severios, including Mar Julius, assembled in the historic chapel of the Old Seminary in the presence of a large gathering of priests and laymen.  The Catholicos and Mar Julius exchanged the letters of mutual acceptance at 11.00 p. m.on 16 December 1958 ending the half-a-century old dispute in the Malankara Church.

The letter of acceptance from the Patriarch Moran Mar Ignatius Yakoub III dated 9 December 1958 said:

We had expressed this wish to order to establish peace in Malankara. (See Appendix 13 for the full text of the Bull.)

(Phil: the entire text of this Bull is above, I am only including the initial and final words of the quote in order to facilitate finding the exact passage in question; the same convention will be followed where applicable.)

His Holiness the Catholicos Moran Mar Baselius Geevarghese II, in the letter of acceptance handed over to Mar Julius, said;

We are pleased to accept...subject to the provisions of the Constitution. (See Appendix 14 for the full text of the Bull.)

The Constitution limits the powers of the Patriarch in respect of his relations with the Malankara Church to three things:

(a) When a new Catholicos is to be enthroned in the Malankara Church, if there is a Patriarch in Antioch elected with the participation of the Malankara Church, he should be invited, and if he comes, he will preside over the Synod of the Malankara Church which enthrones the Catholicos;

(b) If there is a major investigation against the Catholicos and the Episcopal Synod has to take action on it, the Patriarch of Antioch can be invited to preside over the Synod, and if he comes, he will preside; if not the Senior Metropolitan will preside; and

(c) The Malankara Church will recognise only a Patriarch enthroned with the cooperation of the Catholicos of East.

Following the ceremony of mutual acceptance, the Metropolitans of  the erstwhile Patriarch party sent letters to the Catholicos declaring their loyalty and obedience to the Catholicos assuring the Catholicos that the future programme of the Church will be carried out splendidly under the direction of the Catholicos.  (See Appendix 15 for the full text of the letter by Mar Philexinos as model of these letters.)

(Phil: I will reproduce these below, before or after my shower.)

Malankara Association Meeting, 1958

Following the ceremony of mutual acceptance, the Catholicos who was also the Malankara Metropolitan convened a meeting of the Malankara Suriyani Christian Association at St. Mary's Church at Puthencavu on 26 December 1958.  The Association met as scheduled and elected Manalil Yakoub Kathanar as the Priest-Trustee and Ooppoottil Kurian Abraham as Lay-Trustee.  This meeting of the Association held soon after the rapprochement between the Catholicos party and the Patriarch party was a fully representative gathering.  All the parishes under the former Patriarch party had sent their representatives to the meeting.  The Metropolitan Paulose Mar Philexinos announced his unqualified obedience to the Catholicos in the speech delivered by him at the meeting of the Malankara Association held at Puthencavu on 11 December 1958.  (Phil: this appears to be a glaring typo, as the Association met on the 26th, reconciliation only being finalised on the 16th.  Furthermore, the full text of the speech, as it appears in the appendix, is dated 26 December 1958.)  Metropolitan Mar Philexinos, on behalf of the all the Metropolitans of the former Patriarch party, declared support and loyalty to the Catholicate in unambiguous terms.  The Metropolitan said:

We shall remain under the Catholicate as long as the moon and stars shall exist...May this bond of friendship and mutual understanding between the Catholicate and the Patriarchate of Antioch grow in strength. (See Appendix 16 for the full text of the speech.)

(Phil: I am ending the quote here because the text begins to proceed into the souring of relations, and because my hands hurt.  I will reproduce below the letter and the speech of Mar Philexinos.)


Appendix 15: Letter of Paulose Mar Philexinos, 22 December 1958

PAULOSE PHILEXINOS                                                        Gethesemene Ashram Piramadam
METROPOLITAN                                                                Mannathoor P.O., Moovattupuzha
                                                                                       Kerala State, India

His Holiness Catholicos, Moran Mar Baselius II

I praise the Lord that after years of unhappiness in the Church, it has been possible by the grace of God to end the strife and achieve unity on the 16th of this month.

I believe that the future programmes of the Church will be carried out splendidly under your direction.  In regard to their implementation, I solemnly submit that I will follow the canons of the Church, the Constitution in force, and the directions of Your Holiness issued from time to time.

                                                                                       Paulose Mar Philexinos
                                                                                       Kandanadu Diocese


Appendix 16: Speech Delivered by Paulose Mar Philexinos, 26 December 1958

His Holiness the Catholicos, Brother Metropolitans, parish representatives and other members.

I consider it a great privilege to say a few words on this occasion.  We had offered intense prayers and worked hard for this peace.  By God's will we could come together and think over Church's future.

We shall remain under the banner of the Catholicate till the moon and stars last.  This Catholicate will exist for all time to come.  May the God Almighty be pleased that we all will stand united under the leadership of this Catholicos who graces the throne.

I do not mean political or temporal matters.  We have now the privilege of witnessing for our Lord unitedly under the stewardship of one Head.  May this unity serve as a signal to all other Churches of India to fall in line under this common Father. 

We, Metropolitans, will hand in hand serve under the Holy throne of Catholicate.  May this bond of friendship and mutual understanding between the Catholicate and the Patriarchate of Antioch grow in strength.  May it please God that the Churches in India which stand separated come under th Catholicate and witness for our Lord.  May our unity lead the way. 

Mor Ephrem:
Because the last two posts by kefa and benyono did not include documents, but simply commentary with quotes and/or other information, I will be moving them to another thread.  Let's try to keep this thread only for documents (properly cited if at all possible), and for commentary on the documents (and by this, I mean comments along the lines of those of Mathew G M).

ha ha this Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church fanatic could go hide posts in any thread he wants.  That is the usual style of his group for the 100 years of its existence.  Only a fool tries to hide a lit lamp with darkness.  The truth could never be hid. 

Mor Ephrem:

--- Quote from: Kefa on January 02, 2006, 06:31:00 PM ---ha ha this Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church fanatic could go hide posts in any thread he wants.  That is the usual style of his group for the 100 years of its existence.  Only a fool tries to hide a lit lamp with darkness.  The truth could never be hid. 

--- End quote ---

Don't be an idiot.  I didn't hide anything, I simply moved it where it was more appropriate (you could've figured that out if you had simply read).  You can find it, completely unchanged, here:

My apologies for not posting the link earlier. 

lol... knew that would hit a nerve


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