Doctrinal Agreement on Christology

Doctrinal Agreement on Christology
approved by Roman Pope John Paul II and Catholicos of the East Mar Baselius Marthoma Mathews I
issued June 3rd, 1990

1. In our first meeting which was characterized by a spirit of concord, mutual trust, fraternal love and desire to overcome division and misunderstandings inherited from the past, we found our common ground in the one, holy, catholic and apostolic faith, held by the one and undivided Church of the early centuries, the faith in Christ always affirmed by both sides.

2. Above all we thank the Lord Our God for having brought us together for a cordial and sincere dialogue on some doctrinal and pastoral problems which can stand in the way of our mutual ecclesial relations and communion.

3. In this atmosphere we have worked out this brief statement to be submitted to our respective church authorities for their approval, wherein we seek to express our common understanding of, and our common witness to the great and saving mystery of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Word of God Incarnate; we hope, this statement can lead us to the restoration of full communion between our churches. Our work was made much easier by the painstaking documentation and detailed discussions held at an unofficial level by our theologians during the past twenty-five years.

4. We affirm our common faith in Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior, the Eternal Logos of God, the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity, who for us and for our salvation came down from heaven and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit from the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God. We believe that Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, is true God and true man. The Word of God has taken a human body with a rational soul, uniting humanity with divinity.

5. Our Lord Jesus Christ is one, perfect in his humanity and perfect in his divinity — at once consubstantial with the Father in his divinity, and consubstantial with us in his humanity. His humanity is one with his divinity — without change, without commingling, without division and without separation. In the Person of the Eternal Logos Incarnate are united and active in a real and perfect way the divine and human natures, with all their properties, faculties and operations.

6. Divinity was revealed in humanity. The Glory of the Father was manifest in the flesh of the Son. We saw the Father's love in the life of the suffering Servant. The Incarnate Lord died on the Cross that we may live. He rose again on the third day, and opened for us the way to the Father and to eternal life.

7. All who believe in the Son of God and receive him by faith and baptism are given power to become children of God. Through the Incarnate Son into whose body they are integrated by the Holy Spirit, they are in communion with the Father and with one another. This is the heart of the mystery of the Church, in which and through which the Father by His Holy Spirit renews and reunites the whole creation in Christ. In the Church, Christ the Word of God is known, lived, proclaimed and celebrated.

8. It is this faith which we both confess. Its content is the same in both communions; in formulating that content in the course of history, however, differences have arisen, in terminology and emphasis. We are convinced that these differences are such as can co-exist in the same communion and therefore need not and should not divide us, especially when we proclaim Him to our brothers and sisters in the world in terms which they can more easily understand.

9. It is the awareness of our common faith that leads us to pray that the Holy Spirit of God may remove all remaining obstacles and lead us to that common goal — the restoration of full communion between our churches.


The Orthodox Syrian Church to ordain seven bishops

Kottayam: The managing committee of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church met at Kottayam on 20 Feb 2008 decided to elect seven bishops. The managing committee was presided over by H.H. Baselios Marthoma Didymus I and was attended by all other metropolitans except H.G. Dr. Thomas Mar Makarios Metropolitan.

The Malankara Association meeting to elect the bishops will be held at MTM Higher Secondary School, Pampakuda in Ernakulam district on 11 September 2008. The meeting accepted the norms and conditions set for the election of bishops. Ankamali east and west dioceses joined together and named Ankamali diocese and H.B. Paulose Mar Milithios Metropolitan will be in charge of the diocese. The committee accepted the constitution of Mar Baselios Engineering College, Peermade.

Catholicos of the East presides over Chrism Mass Maundy Thursday

Kottayam, India : Catholicos of the East His Holiness Baselios Marthoma Didymus I presided over the celebration of the Holy Thursday Chrism Mass at St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral, Puthiyakavu, Mavelikara on 20 March 2008.

Maundy Thursday, commemorating the day when Jesus established the Eucharist and partook of the last supper with his disciples, was observed in all Indian Orthodox churches throughout the world. The main ceremony of the day involved washing the feet of 12 persons chosen to represent the 12 apostles of Christ. H.H Baselios Mar Thoma Didymos I washed the feet of priests at the St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral.

At the St. Antonius Coptic Orthodox Church, Hayward, California,USA,
His Eminence Mor Meletius Yuhanon , the Indian Orthodox Metropolitan of Thrissur, led the ceremonies and washed the feet of the 12 chosen disciples. Chorepiscopus Fr. Joseph Tarzi and Fr. Mathews George are Assisted .

1- Catholicos of the East Baselios Mar Thoma Didymos I washing the feet of priests at St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral, Mavelikara, on the occasion of Maundy Thursday —Photo courtasy: http://www.malankaraorthodox.tv/

2-Mar Meletius and Chorepiscopus Joseph Tarzi at St. Antonius Coptic Orthodox Church —Photo Courtasy: http://www.malankaraorthodox.tv/

3-The Indian Orthodox Metropolitan of Thrissur His Eminence Yuhanon Mar Meletius performing the foot-washing ceremony held at St. Antonius Coptic Orthodox Church in USA on Thursday —Photo courtasy: http://www.malankaraorthodox.tv/

Click on the Pictures to enlarge it in full size so that you will get it in high resolution.


Body of H.Em. Mar Makarios laid to rest

KOTTAYAM: The mortal remains of His Eminence Thomas Mar Makarios, Metropolitan of the Canada-U.K.- Europe diocese of the Indian Orthodox Syrian Church who passed away on February 23 after a car accident in London, was interred in a crypt at the Devalokam Aramana Chapel on Monday , March 3, 2008.Thousands of faithful gathered for the funeral and send off for one of the Indian Orthodox Church's senior-most bishops.

His body was brought to the Orthodox Theological Seminary, his alma mater, by 12:30am on Monday, March 3 from his home parish Ayroor. After completing the 4th, 5th and 6th segments of the funeral services for the clergy at the seminary chapel, the body of Mar Makarios was taken out for the final leg of his last journey. The ‘nagarikaanikkal’ceremony (farewell procession), to the accompaniment of scores of vehicles, started from the theological seminary by 8.15 a.m. and was brought to the chapel at the Catholicosate headquarters at Devalokam.

The final segment of the funeral services were led by Catholicos of the East and Malankara Metropolitan His Holiness Baselios Marthoma Didymus I, His Beatitude Paulos Mar Milithios Metropolitan, His Grace Dr. Geevarghese Mar Osthathios Metropolitan, His Grace Mathews Mar Barnabas Metropolitan, His Grace Mathews Mar Epiphanios Metropolitan, His Grace Thomas Mar Athanasius Metropolitan, His Grace Geevarghese Mar Ivanios Metropolitan, His Grace Philipos Mar Eusebius Metropolitan, His Grace Kuriakose Mar Clemis Metropolitan, His Grace Job Mar Philoxenos Metropolitan, His Grace Geevarghese Mar Coorilos Metropolitan, His Grace Dr. Mathews Mar Severios Metropolitan, His Grace Dr. Thomas Mar Athanasius Metropolitan, His Grace Paulos Mar Pachomios Metropolitan, His Grace Dr. Yakob Mar Irenios Metropolitan, His Grace Dr. Zechariah Mar Theophilus Metropolitan, His Grace Dr. Gabriel Mar Gregorios Metropolitan, and His Grace Dr. Yuhannon Mar Chrisostomos Metropolitan.

Thousands thronged Devalokam to have a last glimpse of the departed spiritual leader.
Many leaders from other churches throughout Kerala also joined and delivered their condolences to the Church as a whole. Mourners from the U.S. and various government officials also participated in sharing their condolences and expressed their sadness over the departure of Indian Orthodox prelate.Dignitaries including representatives of various Church denominations comprising Archbishop Mar Joseph Powathil (Syro-Malabar Catholic), Major Archbishop Mar Cleemis (Syro- Malankara Catholic), H. G. Joshua Mar Ignatios (Malankara Catholic), Bishop Thomas Mar Coorilos (Malankara Catholic), Bishop Abraham Mar Julios (Syro- Malankara Catholic), H. G. Thomas Mar Thimothios (Jacobite), H. G. Dr. Zacharias Mar Theopilos Suffragan Metropolitan of Marthoma Syrian Church, Dr. Abraham Mar Paulos Episcopa, President Kerala Council of Churches, Rt. Rev. Bishop Thomas Samuel (C.S.I.), Archbishop Mar Kuriakose Moolakattu (Knanaya), H. G. Kuriakose Mar Severios (Knanaya), H. G. Geevarghese Mar Gregorios (Knanaya)

Works Minister Mons Joseph placed a wreath on the body, on behalf of the Government.

Opposition leader Oommen Chandy, Union Minister Vayalar Ravi, Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan MLAs K M Mani, T. U. Kuruvilla Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, M Murali, Joseph M Puthuserry and V N Vasavan, P. C. Thomas (M.P),Kodikunnil Suresh, Kottayam District Collector Ms. Sharmila Mary Joseph , municipal chairperson Reeba Varkey and other people’s representatives also paid their homage. Hundreds of faithful from the deceased Metropolitan’s native place and from abroad joined the masses, as well as a monk brother, priest brother and a nun sister of Mar Makarios, to be present at the departing moment at Devalokam, as the body was interred in the crypt by 12.30 pm.

Earlier, the body of Thomas Mar Makarios was brought from London after the first service, in a frozen enclosure, to the Nedumbassery airport.The body, in sitting posture, was brought to the Old Seminary at Chungam here on Sunday night, from Ayroor, Kozhencherry, his native place, after completing the second and third sections of the funeral service .

Meanwhile, Catholicos of the East and Malankara Metropolitan His Holiness Baselios Marthoma Didymus I,head of the Orthodox Church , in a bull, has said that he, in his capacity as Malankara Metropolitan, has taken over the administration of the Canada-U.K.-Europe diocese.


The first part of the funeral service of Makarios Metropolitan


The first part of the funeral service of senior Metropolitan of Malankara Orthodox Church and former head of the diocese of Canada, UK and Europe Thomas Mar Makarios lead by HG Geevarghese Mar Coorilos started at GMT 18.00 hrs.

All the Oriental Orthodox Churches were present at the occasion represented by Bishops and clergy of the respective Churches. Bishop Angaelos of the Coptic Orthodox Church who is also the President of the Council of the Oriental Orthodox Churches in the UK and Ireland, Bishop Nathan of the Armenian Orthodox Church, Bishop Antonious of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, Bishop Abba Seraphim of the British Orthodox Church and Bishop Christopher Chessun representative of the Archbishop of Canterbury were the esteemed dignitaries who attended the first part of the Funeral Services.
The condolence letter from the Archbishop of Canterbury HG Rowan Williams was read out on the occasion by the representative of the archbishop.

In his letter he expressed his heartful sorrow to the members of the Indian Orthodox church ,who lost one of the great warriors of the tradition and dignity of St.Thomas Christians in India.

The offering of incense (doopha prarthana) followed by H.Qurbana attended by a lot of faithful.
HG Geevarghese Mar Coorilos was the chief celebrant assisted by Rt.Rev Lazarus Ramban and number of priests from Europe ,Canada and America.

People from different parts of the UK especially Birmingham, Manchester, Oxford,and Cambridge are still reaching to the church to pay their final tribute to departed bishop.

The second phase of funeral service
Kochi (India): The second phase of funeral service of Thomas Mar Makarios will be held at Ayroor St Mary’s Orthodox Cheriyapalli, the home parish of the metropolitan, at I S T 5 p.m on March 2.

The mortal remains of the metropolitan, which will arrive at Nedumbassery airport at 9 a.m. on March 2 after the first phase funeral rites at the St Gregorios Church, London, would be brought to the home parish at 5 p.m. accompanied by metropolitans of the church and thousands of faithful via Alappuzha, Changanassery, Tiruvalla, Eraviperoor, Vennikulam and Thiyadikal.

Supreme patriarch and Catholicos of the Indian Orthodox Church H. H. Baselios Marthoma Didymus I would lead the funeral rites. Elaborate arrangements have been made at the church for the faithful and those who present on the occasion to pay their tributes. After the conclusion of the second phase of funeral rites at the church, the mortal remains would be taken in a specially-arranged vehicle to Kottayam Pazhaya Seminary for the final phase of funeral rites.

Friday February 29, 2008

4PM to 6 PM; Viewing at St.Gregorios Church, London
6PM to 7 PM;Funeral service 1st part.
7 PM to 8 PM; Viewing
8PM to 9.45 Evening prayers & Holy Qurbana
9.45 PM to 10.45 Pm Farewell service
10.45 PM; body leaving church to the funeral home
H.G. Geevarghese Mar Coorilose will be leading the services.
Final journey to Kottayam will be Saturday 1st March 13-40 Hrs. by Emirates flight from Gatwick (London).

Sunday March 2, 2008

08:55 AM - His Grace's mortal remains arrive in Nedumbassery International Airport
11:00 AM - Procession to Ayroor begins from Nedumbassery International Airport.
05:00 PM - His Grace brought to St. Mary's Cheriyapally, Ayroor where Evening Prayer will be conducted.
07:00 PM - Procession to Pazhaya Seminary, Kottayam begins from Ayroor.
12:00 AM - Arrival of His Grace's mortal remains to Pazhaya Seminary; All Night

Monday, March 3, 2008 (Courtesy of Devalokam Aramana)

07:30 AM - Nagarikanikkal will begin from Pazhaya Seminary to Devalokam Aramana
09:00 AM - Arrival of His Grace mortal remains to Devalokam Aramana; the funeral service will begin immediately

Click for His Holiness' Kalpana 63/2008 in ENGLISH and MALAYALAM regarding His Grace.