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3992Differences in Theology and faith between the JSOC and IOC

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  • T M Chacko
    Feb 23, 2004
      Dear Jojo,

      I read your posting in the forum. I hesitated to reply because you were asking about the differences in Theology and faith between our Church and the IOC. If it was merely the difference between the two it was very explicit, but the narrowing down of the spectrum makes it difficult. So I will come to your question in my humble understanding.

      What all are the clear differences in theology and in faith between JSOC and IOC?It could be the differences that were always there from the begining,that were made and formulated deliberately or whatever. But what exactly are the points in which we differ (strictly with respect to theology and faith and not abt the differences in administration, organization, attitude etc.) as of today?

      The Theology of our Church is specifically the understanding of God as revealed to the church through the Church Fathers by the Holy Spirit. It is defined by the holy scriptures and by the holy synods over centuries. The faith of the church is formulated by the three universal Synods of Nicea, Ephesus and Constantinople. Speaking anything agaist this credular formulation is a heresy, A teaching or propogation against the divinity or Godhead may be named a blasphemy. The holy church anethmatize this type of heresy and the heretic.

      There is another situation that the church faced in different periods. When someone stands against the church hierarchy and rebels against the head of the church and tries to organize a group with him, the situation is called a schism. The type of incidents in the Malankara church are the formation of the Malabar Independant Church, commonly known as the Thozhiyoor Church and the Methran Kakshi under Vattaseril Mor Dionasius. This schismatics are put under excommunication by the church head in consultation with the holy Synod. The schismatics also will be slowly moving away from the church due to excommunication, lack of proper ordination and the lack of communion through holy Chrism and holy Eucharist. The best example is the shifting away of the
      MIC,Thozhiyoor. At the time of the formation of the Mar Thoma Church they made a package to exchange the episcopal ordination. This was really against the faith and the succession of the historic priesthood. The confession of the same faith is essential for the validity of priesthood, eventhough the sharing of the faith in itself will not validate illegal ordination. This truth was materialised in the awarding of the bishophood to Dr.K.P.Yohannan by the C.S.I. Moderator.

      The Methran Kakshi also resorted to such a means when they received the deposed and excommunicated Patriarch to revive a Catholicate in India. This was denied by the same Patriarch when he was in authority. When coming to the SOC - IOC relations,the main issues are on ecclesiology rather than theology. To make a different ecclesiology they are trying to make different interpretations to the holy scriptures and the traditional exegesis done by the church fathers. These are the issues that were raised by Dr.Thomas Mor Athanasius in his book Ithu Viswasathinte Karyam which he wrote before leaving the church. To sum up, the differences in faith are rather on ecclesiology than theology and faith. As time flies the differences widens and deepens

      In Christ

      T.M Chacko
      St. Mary's Church
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