KOLLAM: The mortal remains of His Holiness Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Mathews II, former Catholicos of the East cum Malankara Metropolitan, were interred at Mount Horeb Monastery Chapel at Sasthamkotta near here on Saturday. He passed away on Thursday 5.10pm at Devalokam, the headquarters of the church near Kottayam.
People from different walks of life, cutting across religious barriers, showed up to bid farewell to the departed former Catholicos whose mortal remains were laid to rest with full state honours. His successor Catholicos Mar Thoma Didimos I led the funeral ceremonies at the Mount Horeb Monastery chapel.
His Holiness was leading a rest life after voluntarily resigning as the Supreme Head of the Church on 29 October 2005 by handing over his office to his successor H.H.Baselios Marthoma Didymos I.
The body was brought to the Old Seminary chapel at Chungam, from the church headquarters at Devalokam, late on Thursday night.The body was kept at the Old Seminary here for public homage till 09:00 a.m. on Friday, and later taken to Elia Cathedral and from there to Sasthamkotta at 2.45 p.m on January 27 Friday. An unending stream of faithfuls paid homage prior to it as the body, with ceremonial vestiges and sceptre, was kept seated in a chair at Elia Cathedral for more than three hours from 11 a.m.
Kottayam town, which had decades-long association with the departed spiritual Father, bid farewell to him as his body was taken in a flower-bedecked special KSRTC bus from the Mar Elia Cathedral grounds at 2.45 p.m. Hundreds of people lined up on both sides of the MC Road also as the cortege proceeded to Kottarakara and from there to Sasthamkotta via Kundara in the afternoon.
Church heads and political personalities gave their farewell speeches at intervals during the course of the services led by Baselios Marthoma Didymus I, Church supremo and successor to the deceased.
Kerala Assembly Speaker Therambil Ramakrishnan, State Revenue Minister K M Mani, Water Resources Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Rural Development Minister C F Thomas, V.S.Achuthandan, KPCC President Ramesh Chennithala, Tennala Balakrishna Pillai, R.Balakrishna Pillai, Former Minister P J Joseph, M G University Vice Chancellor Jancy James, heads of various churches and other prominent persons paid their homage to the departed Holy Father.
His Holiness was enthroned as Catholicos of the East on April 29, 1991 at Parumala seminary following the abdication by the former Catholicos Baselios Marthoma Mathews I on April 27, 1991.
Holy Mooran was consecrated on March 26, 1999 at Catholicate Aramana Chapel, Devalokam. Vattasseril Geevarghese Mar Dionysius was declared a Saint by him on February 24, 2003 at the Old Seminary in his tenuare. He was the sixth Catholicos in Malankara after the establishment of the Catholicate here in 1912 and 89th successor to the throne of St Thomas as Catholicos. Baselios Marthoma Mathews II abdicated the throne on October 30, 2005 due to old age and ill health.