Re: Muzris Church history - Neither Orthodox Nor Catholic or Protestant
- Dear All,
It was good to read the comments by George and Geevar. As George rightly mentioned the Church was founded by Apostle Thomas and not by Nestoreans. There are many versions of church history; probably one of the most authentic, I guess, is that written by Fr. Dr. VC Samuel. 'Sabha Valarunnu' if I remember correctly, is short book written by Fr. Samuel for "Divyabodhanam" classes. However, we need more scientific and truthful research into our past(our past is something we are all proud to boast of !!). I wonder, why precious little has been done by us in this area even in this 21st century. It is disappointing to know that, our seminaries and research scholars spend time on the trivial aspects of the history of Syrian church while doing practically nothing about our own history.
As per the history by Fr. Dr. Samuel, ever since the Persian church became Nestorean, the Malabar Church also was liturgically led by Persian bishops who were Nestoreans. That means, irrespective of whether we like it or not; we(Nazranis) remained for the most part of our history as practitioners of Nestorean liturgy and not Orthodox liturgy. In the society where Nazranis lived, the political government was controlled by "Kshatriyas" while the riligious rites and liturgy were performed by "Brahmins". Hence, I guess, it is possible that, such a model was followed within the Church also. Responsibility of leadership of the church was with the "Arkadhyakon" or the "JathikkuKarthvyan", while the religious rites were performed by the team under the Persian Nestorean bishops. If we think of it in modern terms, it was a kind of "outsourcing" given to the Persian Church !! In the Orthodox faction of the Nazranis, "Jathikkukarthavyan" evolved into the "Malankara Metropolitan" while, we took over the the "outsourced" responsibilities of religious rites; and developed it into the leadership of the Catholicose. The significant point to note here is that we, the entire unified church; remained independent throughout our history, till the sixteenth century. And from then onwards, we split up into multiple factions with and without independence, as Catholics, Orthodox, Protestants and Pentecostals.
Many in the ICON may disagree with these points. I would like to know of all those opinion. It is high time that we think of a reunification of the entire Nazranis.
Abey Jacob, Bangalore.