by Rev. Fr. V.V. Paulose
I love God and my church and wish to die in the true faith of my true forefathers passed on to me. I couldnít digest the century old disputes between two fractions in the Malankara Syrian orthodox community in India and the Diaspora in all over the continents.
My understanding is that the present dispute is overtly in the cloak of true faith but covertly for the power and the enjoyment of its fruits. I donít think, heart of heart anybody likes this disputes and to continues except a few. Christ and Christianity never ever comes near by it. We have lost millions of our souls and are loosing tens and thousands and will loose more. A microscopic vociferous minority now takes upper hands in the church. Silent majority are flabbergasted by not knowing what to do.
The Indian Orthodox community should have come forward and convince the leaders the importance of the age-old spiritual connection to the patriarchate of Antioch and the all the East for their faith and order. Donít be shy even to amass abduction of power for peace. For the administration of temporal matters patriarchate should not have any authority over Malankara church. In spiritual matters there should be a proper forum with power to advice the synod and to the patriarch with binding, with the matters of faith and order.
In the matter of good faith, with immediate effect, revoke all the excommunications that have done against the IOC by Patriarchs in different times with out any pre- conditions. It is the high time to review and if itís necessary, to withdraw the Patriarchal bull on about the sound of questioning the priesthood of St Thomas. Both fractions should withdraw all the cases from all the temporal courts. Pray, fast and act ,the awakened. Let it start from the bottom. Firstly two fractions should lay down the weapons then have. Then solve the problems in a Christian spirit of forgiveness and corrections. Other wise generations will not forgive us from this historical blunder. This is the time for unity at any cost but not for separation. I call the spiritual, learned, ecclesiastical orders of both groups, if you have any concern for the dying souls, to ponder and act.
Never forget the words of Martin in January 6 1946 - speech before representatives of the confessing churches in Frankfurt, it went: "they came FIRST for the communists, and I didnít speak up because I wasnít a communist. THEN THEY CAME for the Jews, and I didnít speak up because I wasnít a Jew. THEN THEY CAME for the trade unionist, and I didnít speak up because I was a protestant. THEN THEY CAME for me and that time no one was left to speak up." These are words that challenge us to the core.
Unity and Cross Participation in Sacraments
Everyone wants to settle accounts Ďmy wayí and that constitutes the main problem. It is high time that the Church leaders tell those few war-mongers and news-mongers in the church to get lost.
Any out of court settlement will require much deliberations in view of the history of the church cases.
God Unifies and Devil
It is not the dispute between laity which divided Church. Therefore any peace initiatives and unity talks should start at the clergy level.
A Suggested Approach to Solve the century old disputes
between (Jacobite) Syrian Christians and Indian Orthodox
A Prominent Jacobite Priest suggests a Christian approach to solve the church disputes.
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