Thrikkunnathu Seminary Issue:
Orthodox Church to boycott ministers
Jacobite Syrian Church announced support to the governmnet's stand
(The New Indian Express, Monday January 28 2008)
KOCHI: Coming down strongly on the government decision on the Thrikkunnathu Seminary issue, the leadership of the Orthodox faction of the Malankara Church has decided to boycott ministers in its functions.
The Orthodox faction also observed a statewide symbolic protest in its churches against the government decision to allow Catholicos Thomas-I Bava and nine Metropolitans of the Jacobite faction to enter the Thrikkunnathu Seminary at Aluva.
A resolution was read out at all churches under the Orthodox Church after the Sunday mass.
Catholicos Thomas-I and others of the Jacobite faction of the Malankara Church had offered prayers at the tombs of Kadavil Poulose Mar Athanasios and St Poulose Mar Poulose at Thrikkunnathu St Mary�s church amidst protests from the Orthodox faction on Friday.
"The State Government is extending help to the Jacobite Syrian Church with political motives. What happened at Thrikkunnathu Seminary is the violation of Supreme Court verdict in 1996. We will approach the High Court against this. The government should not have given assistance to the Jacobite faction to enter the church," said church secretary George Joseph.
"However, we do not want to take the issue to the streets," he said.
He said that the government�s stand giving protection to only one group is anti-democratic.
"The government need not take the faithful to the churches. If there is dispute, the church should be closed", he said.
He also said that they have sought the assistance of the Catholic Church and the NSS on the issue.
Meanwhile, a working committee meeting of Jacobite Syrian Christian Church Bishops and leaders convened at Puthencruz on Sunday announced support to the government�s stand on the issue.
"The Orthodox faction is trying to create conflict deliberately by entering the seminary illegally. Those who inspect the records of the seminary can easily understand that the seminary belongs to the Jacobite Church and the Orthodox faction has no right on it. Besides, the court orders are against the Orthodox Church," the church leadership said in a press release issued here.
The church leadership has also sought the assistance of the leaders of other Christian churches and cultural figures to settle the issue.
The District Collector had clamped ban orders around the seminary since Thursday night.
The St Mary�s church at Thrikkunnathu has been closed for the last 30 years due to the conflict between the Orthodox and Jacobite factions over their claim on the church and seminary.
Govt decision condemned:
The Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church Thiruvananthapuram metropolitan Gabriel Mar Gregorios on Sunday demanded action against officials who allowed members of the Jacobite faction to worship at the Thrikkunnathu St Mary�s Church earlier this week.
In a statement issued in Thiruvananthapuram, Mar Gregorios condemned the steps taken by the government to allow the Jacobite faction members inside the Church.