We consider the following posting from an esteemed member of the forum as a personal matter, which is not directly relevant for discussion on this forum. This narration appears to be one person's account of his experiences in the Church, which the author has put forward at various times through this and other forums. While Dr.George has posted messages earlier on this forum appealing for peace and unity between the two factions (or what we consider two churches at this point), he posts messages on other forums that are very derogatory to the position of our Church. We decided to post this message in its entirety, for getting any response from people with first-hand experience in this issue and can provide their perspective. We request our members not to post messages that do not provide information about the related history/facts. Please bear with us.
In HIS Love,
SOCM Forum Moderators.
A VICTIM OF CHURCH FEUD MY DEAREST FATHER
While reviewing the life of my father Late Rev. Fr. John Pulikkottile on his 42nd dhukahnono I thought to share his life with our esteemed readers.
Mr. P.P.John was employed in the Cochin State excise department as an inspector. Being the only son who was born when the parents were in their forties the job was taken as a gift from God. However; my grand mother had a vow to give if she gets a son, to serve St. Marys Church Arthat as a priest. She never revealed this to any one. When my father got typhoid fever he returned home for treatment. After the recovery he decided to go for the job. The day he wanted to go he got the relapse of fever. Then my grand mother openly revealed her vow. My father accepted it and took up the ordination as a deacon from Late lamented Catholicos HH Moran Mar Baselios Gheevarghese II. Later he served as the secretary of Arthat Kunnamkulam Churches. During that time he was given training by the priests of Kunnamkulam. In order to get the full training he was sent to Old Seminary Kottayam. He moved with late HG Gheevarghese Philexenos during his study time and got HGs training to become a good preacher of sermons. Seeing his ability in priesthood HH Moran agreed to ordain him as a Qasheesho. Unfortunately our family in Kunnamkulam was with Patriarchies sect including my mother house even though my father was an ardent Catholicose supporter. Certain priests with the help of some elders from Kunnamkulam convinced HH Moran not to ordain my father who was a patriarchies sect family man. One day after the Querbono at Old Seminary Kottayam HH Moran called my father and told him that he will not be ordained as a priest and will have to remain as a deacon all his life.
A disappointed deacon who kneeled in front of Pulikkottile Theremins tomb prayed silently and with tears he left the seminary that day to Kunnamkulam. He told his parents the kalpana of HH Moran. The old parents who were longing to see their son as a priest and to receive their old sacraments from him on departure silently grieved.
When our family member knew this incident they talked to my father to leave the Methran sect and join the Patriarchies sect. He was taken to St. Athanesius at Alwaye. Thirumeni who looked at his face asked him to complete the prayers as HB wanted to give him arupattam on the next day itself. It was then decided to ordain my father as a priest on next Sunday. When this news was conveyed to HH Moran, Bava Thirumeni sent a messenger to my father and asked him to return to Kottayam where he will be ordained as a priest. My father told the messenger that he was ordained as a full deacon and next day will be Qasheesho. The will of God is that he should be ordained by St. Athanesius. So he sent the messenger back. HH Moran was very sad on Bavas earlier decision.
My father who was ordained as a priest by St. Athanesius asked him to take the court case of Arthat Kunnamkulam Churches. He was appointed as the vicar even though it was only in paper for the court proceedings. When he returned to Kunnamkulam the priests of Simhasana pally cleverly convinced Mar Julius Bava and never gave him the charge of Simhasana pally rather he was asked to take the charge at Pengamuck St.Peter & St.Paul Church. He obediently served the church from 1946 till his death in 1964.
While serving the orders of St.Athanesius his old friends at Arthat pally became hostile to him. Not only that they made the people of Pazhanji, Mangad, Kattakampala etc against my father. Pengamuck pally was the only bavakakshy pally at that time. My father fought the church case and it was all ready for judgment in favor of bavakakshi. However; it was kept pending to the judgment of Supreme Court case. In 1958 the judgment of Supreme Court announced and the bava kakshi was defeated to the earth. This forced them to go for a peace with HH Moran Catholicose and the kalpana was handed over which proclaimed the peace in Malankara church.
The only bishop from bava side who never attended the peace luthiniya at Kottayam was late HG Serverius Poulose of Cochin dioceses. Thirumeni who was at Wyanad, on the way met my father and decided to accept the order of HH Moran Yacuub III the Patriarch of Antioch. My father along with Panakkal Iyyakku Mathew the leader of bava side in Kunnamkulam remained the protector of this peace.
The peace celebrations were so colorful; meetings were conducted at different churches. The priests of Simhasana pally were adjoined to the stream of priests of Arthat Kunnamkulam Churches. They were given charges to conduct services in all churches. The only one priest who was neglected was my father. He had to remain in Pengamuck with out an entry to any other churches in Kunnamkulam. The reason was given at that time was he was served a mudakku kalpana from HH Catholicose therefore he cannot be accepted as a priest. When all the priests of bava kakshi were accepted why my father was kept aside was unknown at that time. The devoted son to St. Marys Church Arthat who abandoned his job was never allowed to conduct holy querbana in the church. I had seen tears falling through his cheek while we used to pray in Arthat pally on the way to my mothers house. He was indeed a true devotee to yeldod aloho. Once I asked him why he was not allowed to conduct querbana in Arthat pally. With a sigh he told me that he had the fortune to conduct holy Querbono at Manacad pally. I have heard some methran side people talking that my father had a curse from Arthat pally and HH Moran Catholicose. When I asked to my father about it he told me that if catholicose had cursed him then valia Thirumeni (St.Athanesius of Alwaye) had blessed him.
The dissatisfied bava kakshi people of Kunnamkulam grouped with Antiochan movement and wanted a separate parish in Simhasana pally. As per the 1934 constitution which was the basis for the acceptance of Antiochan patriarchies the Simhasan pally had to be under the diocesan bishop. Therefore, late Mar Severios Thirumeni took possession of simhasana church. Thirumeni rotated all the priests of Kunnamkulam to conduct Querbono in Simhasana pally also. The bava group disagreed to it and asked for a separate priest for them from Antiochean movement. My father who was kept aside approached to side Antiochean movement. But he denied as it was against the kalapana of HH Moran Patriarchies of Antioch. Ultimately bava side people became his enemies. The metran side people wanted to crucify my father for his action to leave metran side and to join bava side. He suffered a lot in between these two sides. He decided to remain in Pengamuck alone.
But the Antiochean movement influenced the people of Pengamuck to make trouble in the church. A handicapped man who happened to be the uncle of HG Patrose Osthathios who was ordained as a bishop recently by Jacobite church snatched the key of Pengamuck pally and the trouble started. The seed of quarrel sawn that day is still growing in Pengamuck. Church was closed. Since I was away in the college my father left Pengamuck and stayed at Kunnamkulam. But he was not absorbed into the priests chain in Kunnamkulam nor was he given any sacramental jobs. Because metran kakshi people of Kunnamkulam wanted to rejoice by seeing my father suffer for conducting a church case against metran side. Antiochean movement wanted my father to be sealed as a traitor of Antiochean faith.
That time there was no priest to take up vicar ship at St.Ignasius church Trichur. Since I was studying in Trichur Dr.Chakko George and Justice K.A. Poulose asked me to persuade my father to take up the job in Trichur. My father agreed to take up that position and also to manage the school there. But Mr.Panakkal Mathew asked him to remain free to fight the church case of Pengamuck. It was a lame excuse.
However; in 1962 the church case of Pengamuck was given the judgment in favor of my father as the vicar. By that time the church was already taken in possession by bava side and was not ready to leave the church. One day police protection was given to my father who was the legal vicar to enter the church and conduct Querbono. The already sick and weak he was taken to the church. He never allowed me to go with him as he sensed a tuff fight there. While going for the Querbono he told me that he is going to serve the holy alter where he was sincere all these years. If any untoward things happen the holy alter will pray for me and will protect me. I remained in Simhasana pally praying for him. He entered the church even though there was a tough fight in which several people got injured. After the Querbono my father sat on the dhurga in meditation and never wanted to move as he was the legal vicar. However; he was forcibly moved from the church. The church was closed by the police.
Again in 1964 the church was opened and was handed over to my father. By that time he became very weak and was unable to conduct services. Therefore Rev Fr. Joseph Cheruvathoor was appointed as asst vicar. My father later suffered a stroke and got paralyzed. He was bedridden for a week before he departed on 21st September 1964.
Because of his sincere service to the church it happened that HH Moran Baselios Oughen bava was in Kunnamkulam at the time of his departure. So he got the funeral conducted by bava which was beyond our reach other wise.
He served the church and lost all his family members. The only one left back was me. He had to suffer only because of personal conflicts that were taken to church in the name of faith. There are a number of priests in our church who are suffering because of unchristian activities in the church. The tears and cry of such annointees of Holy Spirit in the midst of our church is not rosy at all.
Can we not stop this church feud which is damaging our faith?
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