SHOWER OF BLESSINGS OVER THE 27th FAMILY CONFERENCE OF ARCHDIOCESE IN USA
- Shower of Blessings over the 27th Family & Youth Conference of Malankara Archdiocese of the Syrian Orthodox Church in North America
The faithful of Malankara Archdiocese of the Syrian Orthodox in North America celebrated the 2012 Annual Family & Youth Conference, the 27th in a row, with extreme joy. The celebrations were taken place at Mount St.Mary's University Campus of Emmitsburg, in the beautiful State of Maryland, USA during July 26 through 29th 2012. The greatest joy of all was the presence of six of our venerable Bishops, especially three of them arrived from across the globe to embrace their spiritual children and over forty five of respected Priests and Deacons from all over USA. No tension, no envy, what a harmony the deserving innocent faithful enjoyed! They were in fact singing `haleluyya' in their hearts, thanking the Heavenly Father for all the blessings showered upon their Archdiocese.
His Holiness Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka Iwas I, the Supreme Head of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church, sent Patriarchate Office Director, H.G. Mor Dionysius Yuhanon Kavaq, as a special envoy from the Holy See of Antioch to the Annual Family Festival of the Archdiocese under his direct supervision. All attendees of the Conference felt that it was of the special affection of His Holiness towards his spiritual children here. H.G.Mor Dionysius was accompanied by His Eminence Mor Cyril Aphrem Karim, the Archbishop of the Syrian Orthodox Church in the Eastern United States who is well known for his love towards the Malankarese and in fact His Eminence is a delight & inspiration for the Youth of the Malankara Archdiocese. Both of these Prelates addressed the Conference and extended blessings through their inspiring messages. Other Prelates who graced the occasion were H.G.Dr.Thomas Mor Themotheos, the Metropolitan of Kottayam Diocese, India, Archbishop Yeldho Mor Titus, H.G.Markose Mor Chrisostomos, the Metropolitan of the Evangelical Association of the East from India, H.E.Ayub Mor Silvanos, Archbishop of Knanaya Diocese in U.S.A. & Europe.
On July 26th, the 1st day of the Conference, registration for the event was continued from 2.30 till 5.30 p.m. and there was long line due to enormous crowd. Evening prayer was conducted at 6 p.m. followed by dinner and thereafter an amusing comedy program, `Comedy Talkies' presented by K.S.Prasad & Crew; a funniest program for the first time ever enjoyed by the attendees of such a Conference,was taken place.
On Friday, July 27th, after morning prayer and breakfast, first grand meeting of the Conference was inaugurated by H.G.Dr.Thomas Mor Themotheos, the Metropolitan of Kottayam Diocese, India. Thirumeni arrived in the U.S. way in advance to grace the Conference and the Archdiocese is truly indebted to His Grace for the continuous care and love through his special ways towards the flock of the Holy Church in this hemisphere who has umbilical connections to the Church in Malankara. In his inaugural address Mor Themotheos pointed out that when we are part of a community we must control ourselves first before trying to control others. The highest form of governing is to govern oneself and when trials and tribulations happen we should not give up hope. His Grace was referring to the theme of the Conference "Rejoice in your hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer Romans 12:12". Righteousness is the beauty of the heart, that beauty shapes the character of individuals which create harmony at homes & nations and everlasting peace in the world, His Grace emphasized. The appreciable and courageous leadership provided to the American Archdiocese of the Syrian Orthodox Church by Archbishop H.E.Mor Titus Yeldho is curiously watched by everybody, His Grace added. Mor Themotheos Thirumeni extended blessings, best wishes and progress to the Archdiocese and for its members.
Very Rev.Abraham O. Kadavil , Archdiocesan Secretary & General Convener, welcomed everyone to the Conference and detailed the progress achieved and about the future projects of the Diocese.He said that the Archdiocese is in the fast track of progress which cannot be blocked. Continuous applause echoed in the Auditorium when Achen said that the Diocesan Council and all the faithful who keep the matters of the Archdiocese closer to their hearts are joined hand-in-hand and determined to strengthen the boundaries of the Holy Church in this nation of free people. Very Rev.Kadavil graciously remembered H.H. the Patriarch who received the diocesan representatives with great affection when they recently visited the holy Father in Germany and Achen reiterated that a Syrian Orthodox Seminary and a Patriarchal Center will be established in the very near future as per the wish and directions of His Holiness.
H.G.Dr.Thomas Mor Themotheos, H.E.Yeldho Mor Titus and H.G.Markose Mor Chrisostomos were joined by all Council Members to light the traditional oil lamp as part of the inaugural function.
The Bull of blessing for the Family Conference and for the entire Archdiocese from His Holiness the Patriarch was read by Archbishop Yeldho Mor Titus before resuming his Presidential address. Initially, Archbishop explained the reason for choosing the particular Bible verse of Romans 12:12("Rejoice in your hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer") was because of his untameable ambition to see unity and irrefutability in the American Archdiocese. His Eminence sincerely appreciated all Priests and lay people in the Archdiocese who wholeheartedly care and love the Holy church with loyalty and full submission. Thirumeni has high expectation about the young Deacons who are coming forward with great energy and vigor to work for the progress of the church. His Eminence made a call to more faithful who are willing to sacrifice and join the priestly isle to come forward for the sake of the Holy Church of our Lord in this part of the world. Archbishop Mor Titus thanked all Council Members of the Archdiocese for their total submission and cooperation in the matters that relate to the administration of the Diocese. Thirumeni added that His Eminence is very happy and thankful to God for the systematic performance of all Spiritual Organizations of the Diocese such as Sunday School, St.Paul's Men's Fellowship, St.Mary's Women's League and Mor Gregorios Syrian Orthodox Students Association (MGSOSA), etc.
The annual publication of the Archdiocese, Malankara Deepam Souvenir 2012, was released by H.G.Dr.Thomas Mor Themotheos by giving a copy to H.G.Markose Mor Chrisostomos after the presentation speech of Chief Editor, Mr.Manoj John.
`A Guide To The Holy Qurbono', a very informative book for all ages on the details of the Holy Eucharist and the related subjects authored by His Eminence Yeldho Mor Titus was also released on behalf of the Malankara Syrian Orthodox Sunday School Association of North America by passing a copy to H.G.Dr.Thomas Mor Themotheos by H.E.Mor Silvanos Ayub. Sunday School Director Dr.T.V.John spoke on the occasion.
Other main speakers at the Conference were H.G.Mor Chrisostomos Markose, H.E.Mor Silvanos Ayub, Rev.Fr.Jacob Joseph, Commander Dr.Roy Thomas, Diocesan Council Member Mr.Saju Skariah, Rev.Fr.Antony Messeh of Coptic Orthodox Church, Dr.Christopher Veniyamin and all of them gave inspiring messages on the theme subject.
Cultural programs were presented by members of various parishes under the Archdiocese in both Friday, July 27th and Saturday, 28th that added enjoyment to all. Numerous sessions of Youth, VBS Sessions for children and meetings of Sunday School Teachers, women's League, Men's Fellowship , and election of office bearers of the Spiritual Organizations on diocesan level and sports & games for all age groups were among the program of both days. VBS presentation of the young children on Saturday, July 28th was a very special attraction. Also on Saturday, a traditional procession with `Chenda-melam' in the presence of five Bishops, all priests and Deacons (the highest number ever in such a festival) and all other attendees of the Conference in the real Malayalee attire, took everyone to the heights of exuberant emotion and happiness.
Rev.Fr.Paul Thotakat, Jt.secretary & Program Coordinator , was the main Master of Ceremony for the entire Conference programs. Mr.Saju Paulose C.P.A , Diocesan Treasurer & General Convener, offered thanks to all attendees and all those who worked hard for the extra ordinary success of the 27th Family & Youth Conference. All Diocesan Council members deserve appreciation as various coordinators of the event. The programs for Youth were taken care of by Rev.Fr.Bijo Mathew (Vice President,MGSOSA ) and Rev.Dn.Shyril Mathai (General Secretary, MGSOSA).
On Sunday, July 29th H.G.Dr.Thomas Mor Themotheos was the main celebrant of the Holy Eucharist, joined by H.E.Mor Titus Yeldho and H.G.Mor Chrisostomos Markose. It was a very special day to remember for all those respected Priests, Deacons and the largest crowd of faithful that over flowed the church facility. After a lavish banquet, the curtain of the 27th Family & Youth Conference rolled down for good.
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Thank you and may God be with us.
Chev.Babu Jacob Nadayil,
Public Relations Officer,
Malankara Archdiocese of the S.O.C. in N.America