Court restrains Baselios Thomas I from entering churches
KOCHI: Ernakulam Additional District Judge A Hariprasad on
Saturday issued an order of temporary injunction restraining
Baselios Thomas I (formerly Thomas Mar Dionysius), the new
Catholicos of the Jacobite Syrian Church, from entering any of
the 107 parish churches in Angamali Diocese, 57 churches in Kochi
Diocese and 55 churches in Kandanad Diocese of the Malankara
Church which are administered under the 1934 constitution of
The Court also issued orders restraining the Catholicos from
acting as the Catholicos or bishop of the Malankara Church. The
Judge pointed out that nobody could claim that there are still
two groups in the Church after the election to the Malankara
Association held under the supervision of Justice Malimath, the
observer appointed by the Apex Court.
The order was passed on an interlocutory application filed by
Thomas Mar Athanasius Metropolitan of the Chengannur Diocese
and two others belonging to the rival Orthodox faction of the
Malankara Church. They submitted that Mar Dionysius was not
entitled to benefit the status quo order of the Supreme Court
in the Church dispute case.
Meanwhile, Thampu George Thukalan, secretary of the Jacobite
Syrian Church, said in a statement that Saturday�s order was not
applicable to the Jacobite Church or its Catholicos as it is made
clear in the order itself that the order is applicable only to
churches belonging to Malankara Orthodox Church which are
administered by the 1934 constitution.
The order is not applicable to churches which have joined together
to form Jacobite Syrian Christian Association and decided to stand
steadfast for the ancient traditions and faith of the Malankara
Church. These churches are administered as per the constitution
drawn up and accepted by the Jacobite Syrian Christian Association.
Thomas Mar Dionysius was elected Catholicos as per the said
constitution. Even as per the the Supreme Court judgment the
Patriarch of Antioch is the supreme head of the Church.
Mar Dionysius was ordained Catholicos by that supreme head