Dear and Respected Moolayil Achen,
I'm happy to see that you've have taken time off to respond to my recent post in reply to the agitated Jacobite Young Turk Dipu George.
My name is Georgy Thomas. You know me. I know you. It's not too much of an ask to use the correct spelling.
I was completely under the impression that you had disinclined to reply to the 'Malankara's Mythical Remixes' series. Part 10 of the series had appeared as Messsage #14066 in ICON during October 2006. This part dealt with the theme 'Catholicos is not Maphryan'.
In April 2007 you wrote a 2-part post in this forum entitled 'Myths, twists and personal interests combined'.
It was about my defense of Mor Yuhanon Meletius. But in the second post (Message #10199 in SOCM) you referred to the content of Part-10 of the 'Malankara's Mythical Remixes' series and made the following observations:
I also want to bring to your notice the immodesty of your posting to call our Catholicose as Maphrian. You have spent a lot of energy to justify your immodesty. I don't want to re examine the pleadings that you made. If I too try that it will become double lengthy. I am now working with a very busy schedule so I am not entering into it. >>
In Message #16023 of ICON, I had indeed made a couple of references to the Maphryan. But I had not spent "lot of energy" or made any "pleadings" on the Maphryan theme. Therefore, I assumed that your reference was to 'Malankara's Mythical Remixes-10'.
Additionally, in the same post, you had made the following general observation:
<<I now find it less beneficial in writing responses to you too. You are not willing to accept facts and admit faults.>>
Respected Achen, this is what made me state that "when he expressed his inability to respond further due to lack of time, I accepted his explanation and left it at that".
There's a possibility that I misunderstood you. But I have not evaded anything.
The Ethiopian Synod Question
My relevant post appeared 4 years ago, in December 2006. For some reason, you forgot to mention the year.
The Conference of Oriental Orthodox Churches took place in Ethiopia during the period January 9 to 24, 1965. At that time, Ethiopia was a monarchy under Emperor Haile Sellassie. The Ethiopian Orthodox Church was then headed by (the ailing) Patriarch Abuna Baselius and his deputy was Abuna Theophilos, who himself was later elevated to the Patriarchal office.
The Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church has enjoyed warm and fraternal ties with the Ethiopian Church for some 60 years now. We have been continuously sending delegates to that church to function as faculty at their two seminaries. In the recent past, the Ethiopian Patriarch even made an apostolic visit to the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church.
Before he became a bishop, HG Paulose Mar Gregorios served in Ethiopia during two stints: 1947-50 and 1956-59. During his first stint, he was a teacher, and left as his legacy, a grammar book he wrote in Amharic.
His second stint was made possible because the Emperor, who adored him, lobbied for his services relentlessly over the years through several channels, including the government of India, and the Catholicos. The Emperor had even made a personal visit to the Catholicos at his Devalokam Aramana in 1957.
During his second stint, HG was an advisor to the Emperor. He also shared warm, personal ties with both Abuna Basilios and Abuna Theophilos.
Another great son of Malankara, Rev Fr. Dr. V C Samuel, also had two stints in Ethiopia: 1963-66 and 1968-1976. During his two stints, Fr. Dr. Samuel occupied important positions like Theology Professor, Dean of the College of Theology, and Secretary of the Faculty Council of the University.
He too shared warm and personal ties with the Emperor and Abunas Basilios and Theophilos. When the latter assumed the office of the Patriarch, it was in fact Fr. Dr. V C Samuel who penned the Amologia* of the new Primate.
Both Fr. Paul Verghese (as a WCC functionary) and Fr. V C Samuel played leading roles in the planning and organisation of the Ethiopian Synod. Two representatives of MOSC, Rev Fr Dr V C Samuel and Rev Fr K C Joseph, were active participants in the pre-committee, which started functioning a year before the conference.#
Without the driving force and the valued counsel of Fr. V C Samuel and Fr. Paul Verghese, one doubts whether the conference itself would have taken place.
At the Conference, the Oriental Orthodox Churches were counted as five: Coptic, Armenian, Syrian, Ethiopian and Indian.
The decisions adopted by the Conference were signed by four of the primates:
The Armenian Apostolic Church did not become a signatory to the conference decisions because of the disputes between the Ejmiadzin and Cilician Sees.
To further the decisions taken by the Synod, a standing committee was selected with two representatives from each of the churches. Their names, I learn, were as follows:
(both from the Coptic Church)
Mar Malatius Barnaba
Mar Severius Zakka
(both from the Syriac Church)
Melake Selam Samuel Terrefe
Dr. Getachew Haile
(both from the Ethiopian Church)
Rev. Fr. Dr. K.C. Joseph
Rev. Fr. Dr. V.C. Samuel
(both from MOSC)
Here too, no representatives from the Armenian Apostolic Church were appointed because of the above mentioned dispute.
If the Syriac Church and the Indian Church were counted as the same at the conference, they wouldn't have become separate signatories to its decisions. Also, separate representatives from the two churches wouldn't have made it to the standing committee as well.
The Oriental Orthodox Synod of 1965 at Addis Ababa in 1965 was a monumental event. Instead of appreciating the efforts made by the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church in facilitating the successful organisation of that event, I am disappointed to find the learned Reverend Cor-episcopa devoting extraordinary efforts to devaluing it.
With his scholarship in church history and Syriac, the respected Moolayil Cor-episcopa would have been a great asset to the undivided Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church. But unfortunately, there's a chasm separating us and preventing the Holy Church benefiting from his services. That chasm has to be bridged.
Let's continue this dialogue in the hope that it will help us find common ground in the near future.
Georgy S. Thomas
ID No. 3256
* Page 354: Vaidikarude Vaidikan. A Commemorative Volume -- The Great Theologian Rev. Fr. Dr. V C Samuel.
# Page 436, ibid
--- In SOCM-FORUM@yahoogroups.com, Very Rev. Kuriakose Corepiscopa Moolayil wrote:
> I read the following remarks by Georgie in SOCM Forum today. I don't fully understand what he is saying about me," But after achen cried off from responding citing lack of time, I stopped the second series after the 10th installment." I surfed the old postings and found the following as my reply to him. But now he "claries" himself in the following words. Let him re-read my last posting appended below....