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Prayer is the Fundament of Stable Families: Dr. Mathews Mar Thimothios


LONDON: Families without love are fragile, said Metropolitan of UK, Europe and Africa diocese Dr. Mathews Mar Thimothios. He was inaugurating the first family conference of UK, Europe, and Africa Diocese at Stevanage.

No stable family life would be possible without fear of God and prayer, the Metropolitan added.

Vice Principal of Orthodox Theological Seminary, Kottayam, Fr. Dr. Jacob Kurien presided over the meeting. Diocesan Secretary Fr. George Joy and Dr. Sen Kallumpuram spoke on the occasion.

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Church News Features News

New President for KCC, Dr. Gabriel Mar Gregorios


KOTTARAKKARA: Dr. Gabriel Mar Gregorios, Metropolitan of Thiruvananthapuram diocese of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church is elected as the new president of Kerala Council of Churches.

Representatives from various Churches took part in the General Assembly of Kerala Council of Churches, which took place from August 26-28, 2010.

Union Minister Videsh Rao Deshmukh, Senior Metropolitan Philipose Mar Chrysostom, current president of KCC Abraham Mar Paulose, Kerala Cabinet Minister Mullakkara Ratnakaran, Metropolitan Kuriakose Mar Theodosios, and Bishop K.G. Daniel led various sessions at the assembly.

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News Obituary

Mariam George Passes Away


KOTTAYAM: Mariam Philip George (60), wife of famous Orthodox theologian and Principal of Orthodox Theological Seminary, Kottayam, Fr. Dr. K.M. George, passed away. The demise was at 9.30 am local time on Friday, August 27, 2010 at their home at Devalokam, Kottayam, Kerala. Funeral will be at 3.00 pm on Saturday, August 28, 2010 at cemetery of St. Thomas Orthodox Church, Vadakkanmannoor, Kottayam. She was daughter of LL Fr. Philipose and Mrs. Thankamma Philipose, Vallyathu, Ezhakulam, Adoor.

Upon hearing the news the Catholicos Elect Metropolitan Paulose Mar Milithios and Metropolitan of Adoor-Kadampanadu Diocese Dr. Zacharias Mar Aprem reached their home and conducted prayers for the departed soul.

Mariam Philip George was under treatment for a while, as she was affected by the painful and dreaded cancer decease. She had served as high school teacher at the MD Seminary High School, Kottayam and took voluntary retirement due to her illness.

She wrote a book during her illness days, ‘Ente Krupa Ninakku Mathi’ (My Mercy Is Sufficient For You), which received wide appreciation. She has also published an album for the solace of the sick, which included songs and prayers.

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Gulf News

MGOC Muscat celebrates feast of Ascension of St Mary with Holy Tri-mass


MUSCAT:The Mar Gregorios Orthodox Church Muscat celebrated the 15-day feast of Ascension of St Mary on August 14 evening with a Holy Mooninmel Qurbana (Tri Mass).

It was led by Rev Fr James Geevarghese, Vicar, MGOC and tri-mass performed by Rev Fr Gee Varghese K K Nallila, Rev Fr John K Varghese and Rev Fr Mathew Philip, from the Sneha Sandesham group.

The tri-mass held at the St Thomas Church was attended by hundreds of faithful. It was followed by a neercha velambu, prepared under the patronage of the church’s Martha Mariam Samajam members.

Earlier, the Sneha Sandesham Convention (Vachana Sishrusha) and family conference organised by Mar Gregorios Orthodox Christian Youth Movement (MGOCYM) as part of Lent and Assumption of St Mary ended on a highly successful note on August 13 evening.

The Sneha Sandesham Convention was held from August 6 to 13th on all days after evening prayers . Also part of the convention were Gana Sishrusha, samarpan, prayer for youth and children and inspiring speeches.

The highlight of the Vachana Sishrusha was the family conference on the theme “Kingdom of God is within the Family” on August 13, Friday at 6.30 pm. There were also variety entertainment programme and family counselling sessions by reputed counseller Brother Aji Varghese.

Sneha Sandesam, the Department of Mobile Mission of Indian Orthodox Church Mission Board toured Muscat with a six member troupe consisting of its convenor Fr Gee Varghese K K Nallila, Fr C C Kuriakose, Fr John K Varghese, Fr Mathew Philip, Brother Aji Varghese and Brother C V Jose Edavattom (orchestration leader). They have now left to UAE churches in Dubai and Abu Dhabi to hold family conference and convention.

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Gulf News

MGOC Muscat releases updated edition of 2010 parish directory


MUSCAT : The Mar Gregorios Orthodox Church Muscat recently released an updated parish directory of its members. The fourth edition was formally handed over by P C Cherian, the parish trustee, to the Vicar Fr James Geevarghese.

Geevarghese Mar Coorilos, former acting Metropolitan of Ahmedabad Diocese, in his message says: “This parish (MGOC) has been actively involved in the ‘life and witness’ of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church and in particular the Diocese of Kolkata (earlier) in various ways.” The directory will certainly help us to know each other, support in various ways and united together to enjoy the fellowship and more as a team for various genuine causes, says the Metropolitan.

The 10-member parish directory committee under the presidentship of Vicar Fr James did a painstaking job spread over months in compiling the data of its 1,300-plus subscribing members.

The exhaustive directory which serves as a ready reference book lists parish members in alphabetical order from A to Z. Containin 312 pages and printed in full colour it provides a quick glance of details alongwith photographs of the husband and spouse along with their date of birth.

Other information like the church identification number (Id No), date of joining the church, area prayer group, blood group, home parish/diocese, details of dependants along with their date of birth, native address, spouse native address and residence in Oman and in India are also provided.

Fr James, says the update became a necessity since the earlier one was done back in 2006. Since the last update the church got separated from Kolkata Diocese (presently under Ahmedabad Diocese) and the Sohar congregation under MGOC Muscat was declared as an independent church and named St George Orthodox Church. The members of the Wilayat of Sohar and nearby areas like Rustaq, Ibri and Buraimi now come under Sohar church.

Also from 2006-2010, 200 new members were added to the Church, many members shifted residence, others migrated, and some had their telephone numbers changed which necessitated the new directory.

The directory include details of the Malankara Association members and Diocesan members (2007-2012), Managing Committee Members, Youth Movement office bearers, Sunday School teachers, Martha Mariam Samajam office bearers (all for 2009-2010), photos of altar assistants and choir members.

Some of the 2010 directory highlights are:

Photos of saints St Gregorios of Parumala, St Vattasseril Mar Dionysius, former Catholicos’, present Catholicos of the East, Catholicos Designate and Assistant to Malankara Metropolitan, Metropolitan, Mumbai and Incharge Metropolitan of Ahmedabad Diocese, Dr Stephanos Mar Theodosius, Joseph Mar Pacomios, Members of the Holy Synod, bishops ordained on May 12, 2010, former vicars of MGOC and their contact numbers are provided.

Messages from Geevarghese Mar Coorilos, MGOC Vicar, Trustee, Secretary, General Convenor – Parish Directory and directory Editor-in-Chief are covered.

An advertiser on the inside back cover has inserted a photo of the Holy Innocent Orthodox Valiyapalli, Mezhuveli, Chenganur Diocese. Established in January 1861, the church is the only one dedicated to the Holy Innocents who were the first martyrs in the name of Jesus.

The directory also has paid advertisements with best compliments and insertions. List of 417 members without photographs are provided towards the end of the directory. Information about the 12 Orthodox churches in GCC along with their address and contact numbers. Also information on institutions run by Orthodox Church like monasteries, convents, orphanages, hospitals and websites where information on the church are also provided.

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Church News Features News

Freedom achieved through tolerance shall be utilized for Human Good: Mar Polycarpos


NEW DELHI: “Freedom of India that was achieved through the acute expression of tolerance shall be utilized to attain human good”, said Metropolitan Youhanon Mar Polycarpos, Metropolitan of Angamali Diocese and President of All Malankara Youth League. He was inaugurating the ‘All Malankara Youth Week’ celebration and Indian Independence Day Celebrations on August 15th, 2010 at the Orthodox Diocesan Center, Tuglaqabad, New Delhi.

“Only when humans live with the full understood meaning of Independence the fullness of Independence achieved. Freedom is not to execute what ever one likes, but it is to be used for the betterment and edification of the state and individuals. This day is very much of importance because of the Translation of St. Mary unto heaven, who became instrumental in bearing the Son of God, who liberated humanity from the bondage of sin. This day is also of importance to the Malankara Church for the day of remembrance of Patriarch His Holiness Abded Massiha, who helped establishing the Catholicate, which is the symbol of freedom of the Orthodox Church in India, falls on this date”, added the Metropolitan.

Ramban Fr. M.S. Skaria presided over the public meeting. Youth League Diocesan Vice President Fr. Philip M. Samuel, Fr. Shaji Mathews, Marth Mariam Women’s League Diocesan Vice President, Fr. Johnson Ipe, Vicar, Noida Mar Gregorios Orthodox Church, Youth League Diocesan Secretary Joji Ninan, Samuel George and John Mathew spoke on the occasion.

Woman Coordinator Annie Yohannan, Former Secretary Jiji K. Ninan, and Central Committee members Jaimon Chacko and Suma B. Thomas led the proceedings.

Various activities are planned for the meaningful observation of the ‘All Malankara Youth Week’. There was hoisting of Indian National Flag to mark the celebration of Indian Independence Day in the morning after the Holy Qurbana too.

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Church News Features News

Parumala Medical Mission Hospital Receives ESI Recognition


PARUMALA: St. Gregorios Medical Mission Hospital, Parumala received recognition from the Employees State Insurance program of the Central and Kerala Governments.

All patients, who come under the ESI Scheme can now receive treatment at all departments of St. Gregorios Medical Mission Hospital, Parumala, including Department of Cardiology.

“All registered card holders of the Insurance Scheme can seek medical attention here and their needs will be catered to through special counters”, said Fr. Alexander Koodarathil, CEO of the SGMM Hospital, Parumala and Dr. Alex Paul, Director, SGMM Hospital Parumala.

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Church News Features News

Mar Seraphim Assumes Charge of the Bangalore Diocese


BANGALORE: Dr. Abraham Mar Seraphim, the newly appointed Metropolitan, assumed charge of the Bangalore Diocese in a ceremony after celebrating Holy Qurbana at the St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, Hosur Road, Bangalore. Dr. Abraham Mar Seraphim is the first Metropolitan of Bangalore Diocese with full independent charge.

Clergy of the Diocese and a number of faithful attended the Holy Qurbana, which Metropolitan Mar Seraphim celebrated.

“Our life must base upon the vision that the savior of the world, Lord Jesus Christ, has handed down to us. Light of life that the faithful radiate shall be shining above our verbal jargons”, Mar Seraphim exhorted the faithful of the Bangalore Diocese. He also added that the Church will pay better attention to the spiritual needs of those, who work in the IT field and there will be organized attempts to better utilize their technical expertise to the growth of the Church.

According to Metropolitan Mar Seraphim, Bangalore Diocese has to found new Churches, hospitals, schools and service oriented activities. He also thankfully acknowledged services of former Metropolitans of the Bangalore Diocese.

Apart from Churches in Karnataka, Hyderabad, Vishakhapattanam, and Churches from Gulf Region like Rassal Khaima, and Fujeirah also come under the jurisdiction of the Bangalore Diocese.

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Features News Uk And Europe

Mar Thimothios commences Two Month’s England Visit


LONDON: Metropolitan of the UK Europe and Africa Diocese Dr. Mathews Mar Thimothios commenced the two month long England visit on August 12, 2010. This is the first time that the Metropolitan visits parishes in England this year.

On August 14 the Metropolitan visited Oxford and on 15th he celebrated Holy Qurbana at the St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, London. The Metropolitan will celebrate Holy Qurbana at Sheffield on August 21st.

Dr Thimothios will lead the Diocesan Family Conference at Stevenage from August 27 to 29.
Metropolitan is visiting Sunderland for a week from September 4th Saturday onwards, where he will also preside over the COCC meeting.

The Metropolitan is to visit Portsmouth on September 11 Saturday and to celebrate Holy Qurbana at Birmingham on September 12th, Sunday. On September 17 he will lead the West Minister Ecumenical Service too.

The bishop of UK Europe and Africa Diocese will reach Glasgow on September 18th and on 19th he will celebrate Holy Qurbana at Belfast.

Dr. Thimothios will reach Bristol on September 25th and will celebrate Holy Qurbana at Northampton. He will also attend the Liverpool Conference from 1st of October onwards. The visit is to end on October 12th.

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Church News Features News

Consecration of ‘Malankara House’, Republic of Ireland


IRELAND: Metropolitan Dr. Mathews Mar Thimothios of the Europe and Africa Diocese has consecrated the Malankara House, Dublin , Ireland ( The Orthodox Church House and Catholicate Centre) on June 29. Now the Malankara House is the second Center of Malankara Orthodox Church in Europe.

The consecration has begun with evening prayers on June 29. Vicar Fr Koshy Vaidyan and Fr Eldo Varghese attended the services along with the Metropolitan.

After the services the Metropolitan received the keys of the Center from Parish trustee, Alex Abraham and handed them over to Fr. Koshy Vaidyan, the Vicar, who in turn handed them further over to the trustee of the Parish.

A public meeting was held after the consecration. Metropolitan Dr. Thimothios in his presidential address commended on the unity among the members of the parish. Metropolitan also congratulated the Vicar, Managing Committee members and the faithful of the St. Thomas Orthodox Church at their achievement. John Mathew, Secretary of the parish, moved the vote of thanks.

The Malankara House provides facilities, which enable the faithful to tank spiritual care. The Center also included a well-stacked library and church magazines are provided there to the faithful for reading. Morning and Evening prayer service and Bible classes in the Prayer room are available for all who wish to participate too.

News sent in: Fr Koshy Vaidyan