Diocese News Features News

Metropolitan Mar Seraphim to open MGM Counselling Centre in Bangalore

BANGALORE: Dr Abraham Mar Seraphim Metropolitan who is making his maiden visit to Bangalore after his recent consecration as a Bishop of the Malankara Orthodox will inaugurate the “MGM Counselling Centre” on June 26, Saturday.

The MGM Counselling Centre is a project of the Mar Gregorios Orthodox Christian Student Movement (MGOCSM)’s student and youth counseling centre.

Dr Seraphim Metropolitan has kindly consented to inaugurate the centre in his capacity as the former general secretary of MGOCSM of India.

On the occasion, the Karnataka Chapter and Bangalore Diocese MGOCSM will also felicitate the newly consecrated Metropolitan.

The function at 2 pm will be held at the St George College Auditorium, OMBR Layout, Banaswadi, Bangalore. Shri K J George, Congress MLA of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly from Sarvagna Nagar Constituency will be the chief guest.

Felicitation notices were issued in Bangalore Orthodox churches by Fr Dr Paul T Varghese, Students’ Chaplain and Vice President, MGOCSM, Karnataka Chapter and Fr Saji Daniel, Vice President, OCYM & MGOCSM, Bangalore Diocese.

Features News World News

New Bishop Consecration in India for the Antiochene Syriac Orthodox Church

NEW DELHI: Primate of the Antiochene Syriac Orthodox Church, Mor Severios Mose Gurgan consecrated two priests from Jacobite and Orthodox factions as bishops at St. James Lutheran Church, New Delhi on June 17.

Yuhanon Mor Thimothios is appointed as bishop of Idukki and North Kerala diocese and Mathews Mor Gregorios as bishop of Kottayam and South Kerala diocese.

Yuhanon Ramban was serving as Manager of Manjanikkara Dayara. He has also served as manager of Benyamin Joseph Mar Osthathios, the former secretary of two Patriarchs of Antioch, namely, Yacob III and Zakka Iwas. He was a member of St. Johns Jacobite Church, Rajakumari. He belongs to the Molethu family, Rajakumari, Idukki.

Fr. C.G. Mathews hails from Neduvampurathu Kaliankal family of Kaipattoor, Pathanamthitta and was a member of St. Ignatius Orthodox Church, Kaippettoor of Thumpamon diocese. He is at present the Superior of St. Jude’s Monastry, Amayannoor, Kottayam. Fr. C.G. Mathews completed his B.D and M.Th. from Orthodox Theological Seminary Kottayam. It was in 2004 that Fr. C.G. Mathews established the St.Jude’s Dayara at Amayannoor, near Kottayam. Fr. Mathews, being a humble devotee of St. Jude, started the Dayara to materialize his vision, which he had had during his North Indian Ministry. He is also the Chief Editor of ‘Thadevoos’, a publication of ecclesiastic interest.

It is the second time that a Jacobite priest becomes bishop of Antiochene Syriac Orthodox Church. Earlier Joseph Ramban of the Patriarchal faction was consecrated as bishop of Antiochene Syriac Orthodox Church by Mor Severios Mose Gurgan, her Primate. Bishop Joseph Mar Barthalomios is shepherding Ankamali and Central Kerala diocese.

It is being understood that Mor Severios Mosus Gurgan has plans to consecrate more bishops and priests for Antiochene Syriac Orthodox Church in Kerala and other countries.

March 2008 Editorial

Columns Opinions

Edinburgh 2010: Witnessing to Christ Today

In our lives there are some defining moments in which we realize in a very unique way that we are uniting in Christ’s dream of uniting with one another. To be part of the Edinburgh 2010 Centenary Celebrations of World Missionary Conference was such a unique occasion. It was unfortunate that there were no Orthodox participants at Edinburgh 1910; the conference received only a letter from Archbishop (now Saint) Nicolai Katsatkin of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Tokyo. Therefore it’s a great privilege to be the only delegate to represent from Malankara Syrian Orthodox Church and present two papers on Study Theme Eight Parallel Sessions Mission and Unity: Ecclesiology and Mission of Transversals (1) Reconciliation & Healing (2) Youth & Mission.

Edinburgh 2010 reflected on the theme “Witnessing to Christ Today” and welcomed 300 Christians to Edinburgh, Scotland from a variety of church traditions: Protestant, Orthodox, Catholic, Anglican, Evangelical and Pentecostal. It was been an occasion to review the history of faith over the past century and to look toward the future of world Christianity. It is said that in June 1910 the city of Edinburgh hosted one of the most defining gatherings in the entire history of Christianity. The 1910 World Missionary Conference was a unique event of the 19th century ecumenical movement which to initiate ecumenical movement and facilitate greater unity amongst the various strands of Christian witnesses. Edinburgh was a crucial attempt made for a global gathering in order to facilitate cooperation across denominational barriers. The issues of mission and unity have always been intertwined throughout the history of the modern Ecumenical movement, of which the World Missionary Conference in Edinburgh 1910 has become the symbolic beginning. It is remarkable to note that the issue of mission and unity was the very concern out of which Edinburgh 1910 took its form. The parallelisms, competitions, conflicts and divisions on what was then called ‘the mission field’ gravely undermined the credibility of the witness of the love of Christ. This was painfully felt by those committing their lives to mission in different contexts.

Although attempts were made to settle these conflicts on local and regional levels, it was still felt that there was a need for Christian mission to be harmonized globally, thus Edinburgh 1910 was born. Intercultural situations on the mission field also led to unprecedented personal experiences of loyalty, even friendship, among Christians that transcended denominational and organizational divides. It is sad to note that today many ‘movements’ have become ‘monuments’, however the 1910 world Missionary Conference which was a starting point of the modern ecumenical movement has made remarkable progress quantitatively and qualitatively, extensively and intensively. Ecumenism and Mission activities have now moved away from the mere fringes of proselytizing to greater and noble areas of work and study, thanks due to the engagement of many creative thinkers, enthusiastic ecumenically minded missionaries. The Centenary Celebration of Edinburgh World Mission Conference becomes a unique occasion to celebrate ecumenical unity, mapping mission mandate, understand the challenges and opportunities faced by the Churches and Ecumenical Movements in the contemporary world.

The uniqueness of Edinburgh 2010 was the Study Process. The study process has been centered on nine main themes, which are complemented by seven transversal topics, and supplemented by regional, confessional and other study processes. Studies and consultations have taken place in all continents and the process is as inclusive as possible of churches and Christian mission networks. Each of the groups working on the nine study themes has produced a report. These, together with contributions on the transversals relating to women and the Bible, form the raw material for discussion at the conference.

Part I: Study Themes:

1. Foundations for mission 2. Christian mission among other faiths 3. Mission and post-modernity 4. Mission and power 5. Forms of missionary engagement 6. Theological education and formation 7. Christian communities in contemporary contexts 8. Mission and unity – ecclesiology and mission 9. Mission spirituality and authentic discipleship

The study groups are globally diverse, and each includes people of many different Christian traditions and representing a variety of institutions and organizations. Each is tasked with identifying some key questions, highlighting developments since 1910, giving case studies, identifying key priorities for Christian mission, and making strategic recommendations. Groups have worked to integrate the work on each theme from around the world for a pre-conference publication and for discussion at the Edinburgh 2010 conference itself. Each study group was also disseminating its work in other ways appropriate to its process and finding creative ways of communicating to the grassroots.

Part II: Transversal topics

Also in 2005-2006 it was recognized that a number of ‘transversals’ are needed, i.e. important themes which will run like a thread across all the main study themes. From 2009 onwards the transversals are being developed and integrated with the main study themes. The following ‘transversals’ have been identified.

1. Youth and mission 2. Women and mission 3. Healing and reconciliation 4. Bible and mission – mission in the Bible 5. Contextualization, enculturation and dialogue of worldviews 6. Subaltern voices 7. Ecological perspectives on mission

Part III: Regional and confessional study processes

Recognizing the worldwide character of the Church today, institutions, networks, agencies and Churches in different parts of the world are contributing to the Edinburgh 2010 study process in whatever way is best suited to their particular circumstances. Some groups are participating by bringing a regional or confessional perspective to the Edinburgh 2010 mission themes. The research Coordinator is collecting the outcomes of these different study processes from around the world.

Dr. Dana Robert, Truman Collins Professor of World Christianity and History of Mission, Boston University School of Theology, gave a keynote address, which was followed by several complementary perspectives recognizing different histories and current contexts. This session illuminated the conference theme in the light of one hundred years of ecumenical mission since 1910. Pope Benedict XVI has sent a formal greeting to delegates, visitors and staff attending the Edinburgh 2010 anniversary event commemorating the World Missionary Conference held at Edinburgh in June 1910. The Catholic delegation to Edinburgh 2010 was led by Bishop Brian Farrell of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. The Delegates had a formal reception in the Scottish Parliament on 3 June 2010. In the General Assembly Hall of the Church of Scotland in Edinburgh, the historic venue of the 1910 World Missionary Conference on Sunday afternoon delegates and local and international visitors gathered to the final celebration. The Archbishop of York, Dr. John Sentamu, was the guest preacher at this event.

To read more

Fr. Vineeth Koshy was assigned for Edinburgh 2010 Study Theme Eight Parallel Sessions as Resource Person — Mission and Unity: Ecclesiology and Mission: Transversals (1) Reconciliation & Healing (2) Youth & Mission at Centenary Celebration of Edinburgh 1910 World Missionary Conference. Fr.Vineeth Koshy
is currently working as the Executive Secretary – Commission on Youth of National Council of Churches in India

Features News Northeast America

Floral Welcome to the Catholicos Elect Metropolitan Mar Milithios

NEW YORK: North East American Diocese gave a warm welcome to the Catholicos Elect Metropolitan Paulose Mar Milithios on Wednesday, June 17, 2010, at the JFK International Airport, New York. Auxiliary Metropolitan of the Diocese of North East America Zachariah Mar Nicholavos handed down the floral bouquet to the Catholicos Elect.

Apart from Metropolitan Zachariah Mar Nicholavos, Diocesan Secretary Fr. John Thomas, PRO Chor-Episcopos P.S. Samuel, Chor-Episcopos Jesudasan Pappan, Fr. Dr. K.K. Kuriakose, Roy Ennacheril, Malankara Managing Committee Member Captain Koshy Thomas, Diocesan Council Members, and number of faithful from neighboring parishes were present at the Airport.

The Catholicos Elect resides at the Diocesan Centre.

Aramana Phone Number: 718.470.9844

News Northeast America Parish News

Catholicos Elect to Consecrate Staten Island Church on Friday and Saturday

NEW YORK: Consecration of newly renovated St. Mary’s Orthodox Church, Staten Island, New York will take place on Friday and Saturday, June 18-19, 2010. Catholicos Elect Metropolitan Paulose Mar Milithios will be the chief celebrant at the consecration services.

Metropolitan of the North East American Diocese Mathews Mar Barnabas, Auxiliary Metropolitan Zachariah Mar Nicholavos, Metropolitan of Kandanadu Diocese and Secretary to the Episcopal Synod Dr. Mathews Mar Severios and Metropolitan of the Diocese of South West America Alexios Mar Eusebius will assist the Catholicos Elect.

“Construction of the new Church with an elegance of antiquity is primarily the gift of God. At the same time it is also the achievement of a relentlessly hard working Construction Committee and sincere and prayerful cooperation of the parishioners”, said the Vicar Fr. T.A. Thomas. Fr. T.A. Thomas led the construction committee. It took five years to finish the construction of the new Church.

Events are to begin at 5.00 pm on Friday, June 18 with a red carpet welcome to the Metropolitans. First part of the consecration will follow on the same day after the evening prayers.

Morning prayers will begin at 7.00 am on Saturday, June 19, which will be followed by the second part of the consecration. Holy Qurbana and public meeting will be to go thereafter.

For More Details:

P.C. John (Treasurer): 973.731.5447
Raju Philip (Convener): 917.854.3818
George Mathew (Convener): 718.801.0453

News Parish News

Bellwood Cathedral Felicitated New Graduates

CHICAGO: St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, Bellwood, Chicago, felicitated new graduates on Sunday, June 13, 2010. To begin with the day’s episode Fr. Daniel George celebrated Holy Qurbana at the Cathedral.

The meeting began after the Holy Qurbana at the Cathedral Hall. Fr. Daniel George presided over the meeting. Sunny Kulathakkal said in his inaugural address that the achievement of new graduates was one of the cardinal steps in their sojourn towards a successful life.

Dn. Diju Skariah, Lisa Joseph, Angeline, Babuji, Colleen Mathew, Dennis, George, Isen Punnose, Jino John, Joan George, Lijo George, Melvin Abraham, Soju Abraham, Stephen John and Lijin Ipe were the new graduates, who were felicitated.

Philip Kunnel, Molamma Mathew and Chrisi Kuriakose congratulated the new graduates representing various spiritual organizations.

Musical contributions from Jino John, Allan James, Sabrina Baiju Jose, Leena Daniel, Diana Joseph, Sonia Joseph and Sheryl John under the direction of Gregory Daniel added flavor to the events.

Albert George, Babuji Skariah, George Kunnel, George Varghese Vengazhiyil, John George, Mathew Abraham (Joy), Mohan Abraham, Oommen Ipe, Philip Kunnel, Rajan John, Thomas Skariah, and Varghese Punnose sponsored the day’s events.

John George, Secretary of St. Gregorios Cathedral welcomed the gathering. Representing the graduates Stephen John moved the vote of thanks. Bincy Alexander and Nimmi Kurien were the MCs.


Christian Education In The Family

Christian education of children should be carried on chiefly within the home, within the family. Instruction given in Sunday schools and attendance of church services are very important, but dependant, of course, on the family’s cooperation and attitude. Family is recognized as the ‘home church’, and the task of the parents is really a kind of lay priesthood. Within a Christian family our Christian faith must be incarnated; it must be brought to life in the daily, hourly experience of living. Children attend Sunday school for an hour a week; they attend church services for another hour or two, but family life goes on all the time, every day of the year, and is embodied in every detail of living – in personal relationships, in providing, preparing and partaking of food, in health and in sickness. It is the environment within which the life of the child unfolds.

Love in Family Life

The nature of the family is that it is based on love, is an embodiment of love between several human beings. A family is not made by legal definition; it is based on the love of husband and wife for each other and the love between parents and children. The experience of family love is different from other expressions of love. It is essential in the sense that – unlike romantic love or devotion to some cause, that demand proclamation and explanation in words – family love does not have to be consciously verbalized. Furthermore, it is a universal experience, because every human being belongs to some kind of family.

The Christian concept of a family and of family love has a special character. It is similar to the Trinitarian concept of God: a human being cannot exist completely by itself. It becomes fully human within a relationship of love with other human beings. Such a relationship can be violated – human beings may not love each other, parents may not love their children, children may not love their parents – but lack of love is always a violation of the true nature of the family.

Husband and wife relationship

The husband-wife relationship is very different from the romantic period of ‘being in love’. As much as romance is very important in a relationship, in the husband-wife relationship each one of the partners gives up his or her ‘selfness.’ One person becomes only a part of the new unity. In order to be happy, both of them have to be happy; if one is unhappy, both are. O decision can be isolated one. The hurts of the other person mean as much as your own hurts. Whatever you do, the other is involved. In a very real sense in marriage two become one.

The difficulty of the relationship is that loving is not the same as liking. There are always traits and qualities that a couple dislikes within each other. It may be arrogance or laziness, talkativeness or impatience, some habits and tastes inherited from one’s former family, some superficial mannerisms. There are circumstances in which a husband and wife simply get on each other’s nerves. How does on then deal in love with traits one dislikes? This abrasive nature of the married life is what one might call its ‘askesis,’ and experienced monks say that the ascetic effort of married life is greater than that of a monk in a monastic community. In other social groups you can avoid a person who has irritating traits. You can control yourself and put up with another’s exasperating traits for a limited time; but in a family there is no way of isolating yourself. Such as you are, you have to come to terms with the other members of your family as they are. A Christian family comes into being only when the ‘coming of terms’ is a true incarnation of Christian faith, hope and love.

Chapter 13 of the First Epistle to the Corinthians remains forever the most helpful and practical manual of love in human relationships. The effort to apply this kind of love, the constant effort to deal in this spirit with the thousands of aggravating difficulties in our daily relations goes on throughout the long years of every Christian marriage. Love does not exclude anger. Something is wrong with your love if you are never angry. Precisely because a husband or a wife has a lover’s vision of his or her partner as a person who is worth loving, anything that destroys this vision cannot leave that person indifferent. Anger rooted in love is a necessary element in husband-wife relationships; marriage is not a ‘society of mutual admiration.’ There is nothing wrong in a certain fear of one’s spouse’s anger. In a


Who is Jesus?

BibleSociety — September 10, 2007 —…
What are the teachings of Christ? Who is Jesus?
Who Is Jesus? DVD


The secular world presents a ton of confusing messages about who Jesus really is. We’ve created this mini DVD, an enactment from the Gospel of Matthew, as an innovative evangelistic presentation. In addition to the video, you’ll find a relevant commentary that will help to answer those tough questions. It’s perfect to share with friends or use in an outreach. Run time approximately 20 minutes.

News Parish News

SSFC ranker from St Mary’s Orthodox Church, Jalahalli calls for changes in Orthodoxy

BANGALORE: The Mar Theodosios Memorial Gold Medal was awarded to Rahul Cherian for securing the third rank for Sunday School Final Certificate SSFC-OKR in the year 2008.

The award has been sponsored by St Gregorios Indian Orthodox Maha Edavaka, Kuwait and presented by Fr K M Jacob at the St Mary’s Orthodox Church, Jalahalli, Bangalore on May 2, 2010.

Rahul Cherian, a member of the St Mary’s Orthodox Valliapally, Bangalore, Madras Diocese, had scored 90 / 100 for the Sunday School Final Certificate (SSFC) examination conducted by the Orthodox Syrian Sunday School Association of the East (Outside Kerala Region) in 2008.

In February, Abraham Mar Epiphanios , Assistant Metropolitan, Bangalore Diocese, on his maiden official visit to the Valliyapally also ordained Rahul as an altar boy to the church before the Holy Qurbana. The short function was attended by ex-vicar of the Jalahalli church Fr K M Jacob and Fr Geevarghese Samuel.

“I thank God for helping me get the 3rd rank in SSFC OKR exam and also for making me to enter the altar. Being inside the altar is an all together a different feeling. The sort of feeling which would make one direct towards the presence of the Almighty,” says Rahul.
An active member of the church’s MGOCSM, Rahul who derives inspiration from Parumala Thirumeni, is now presently doing Standard XII in Sunday School.

Rahul has candid and forthright views of the church. “My views about the church would be quite conflicting. I feel that our orthodoxy needs a change. We have stood the test of time and maintained our heritage and traditions very well .But as of now, the church needs a change – a sort of change which would attract more people towards orthodoxy rather than making people quit and join other factions.”

A product of the Bangalore Kendriya Vidyalaya No 2, Jalahalli East, Rahul is trying to get into the National Law School India University and aspires for a career as a diplomat or in the Indian judicial services.

Rahul is the grandson of Chackizhathu Arabham Cherian from Kidaganoor, Chenganur. He is the son of Lal and Elizabeth Cherian and has Renee Susan Cherian as his sister.

News Parish News

Consecration of St. Gregorios Orthodox Church San Francisco, CA

SAN FRANCISCO: Consecration of St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, San Francisco will take place on Saturday, June 12, 2010. Metropolitan of the South West American Diocese Alexios Mar Eusebius will be the chief celebrant.

“St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, San Francisco has planned a red carpet welcome to the new Metropolitan of the newly eructed South West American Diocese, who arrives here for the first time and especially for the consecration”, said the vicar of St. Gregorios Orthodox Church Fr. Joseph Kalappurayil.

Metropolitan Alexios Mar Eusebius will preside over the public meeting on June 12th at 6.00 pm. Indian Consul General Sushmitha Ganguly Thomas will be the chief guest. City Police Deputy Chief Gloria Lopez, Fr. Theodore and Fr. Stevens from the Cyber Monk Russian monastery, Rev. K.A. Abraham of the Marthoma Parish and Fr. Kurien of the Catholic Parish will speak at the occasion.

Consecration services will begin at 8.00 pm on Saturday.

Morning prayers will begin at 9.00 am on Sunday, June 13, 2010, which will be followed by the Holy Qurbana. Metropolitan Mar Eusebius will be the chief celebrant.

Colorful events after the Holy Qurbana will add flavor to the celebrations. A grand refreshment party is planned at 5.00 on Sunday evening to wrap up consecration celebrations.

Jackson Mathew is the convener of program committee.