Posts Tagged ‘Thelakkat’

“Thomas myth” raked up by the Kerala Church to suppress the multi-crore land scam racist, liturgical and  catechetical problems (2)

April 17, 2018

“Thomas myth” raked up by the Kerala Church to suppress the multi-crore land scam racist, liturgical and  catechetical problems (2)

Discussing Thomas myth- Thelakkat and Narayanan

G. S. Narayanan pointed out that Kerala was not habituated during first centuries: Noted historian M G S Narayanan said there were no historic documents to suggest that St Thomas had come to India for evangelisation work[1]. “There were no human habitations here at that time in Kerala. There was only forest here. How would he visit such a place? For what? . Human settlements began towards the end of Mauryan dynasty, he said. It is common for religious heads and political parties to twist history for their benefit, he told a Malayalam TV channel. The Syrian Christian community in Kerala believes that St Thomas came to this part in AD 52 and had established churches. The community considers St Thomas as the ‘Father in Faith’ of Christians in India. The Syro-Malabar Church has over 30 dioceses in the country and four outside– in the U.S.A., Canada, Australia and Britain–serving over five million faithful. M.G.S. Narayanan had earlier questioned the claim[2]. “Thomashleeha (as St. Thomas is known in Kerala) is an imaginary thing. He is one of the apostles. He should be Christ’s contemporary. If he had come to Kerala, there would have been only forests in Kerala, let alone Brahmins,” Narayanan told Outlook. “Syrian Christians’ trade relations with Kerala started in 2nd and 3rd century. Brahmins came as a hegemonic community in Kerala only in 8th Century,” he said. Pius Melekandathil, professor at the Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), who is an expert on maritime history and church history, admitted that it is a matter of dispute however saying that the probability factor has to be taken into consideration.

Geevargheese Mor Cooilos denies Brahmins were converted by Thomas
The Bishop, Geevarghese Mor Coorilos asserted that Thomas never converted Brahmins[3]: The Bishop of Niranam diocese, historically one of the oldest dioceses of the Jacobite Syrian Christian Church in Kerala, has criticized the upper caste tendencies among believers fuelled by a “mythical” belief that St. Thomas converted Brahmins to Christianity in Kerala[4]. It is also widely believed that St Thomas, one of the 12 apostles of Christ, had converted members of top Brahmin families in Kerala to Christianity. Though the Abrahamic faith is devoid of caste hierarchies, Christian families often hold get-togethers to celebrate their lineage and put out books proclaiming their Brahmin origin[5].  The Bishop, Geevarghese Mor Coorilos, however, in a Facebook post announced[6] that he would not attend any such get-togethers, dubbing them as “programs to assert their artificially created upper caste identity and lineage.” “They say their ancestors were Brahmins converted by St. Thomas. They even put out their family history in books proclaiming such false notions. These baseless, savarna caste-oriented and reactionary myths have to be busted,” read his statement in Malayalam, adding, “I did attend such events due to my personal intimacy with them. But, I regret it. I can’t (do it) any more”.

Geevarghese Mor Coorilos asserts that Brahmins not converted by Thomas

Supporting Brahmin or Dalit – the Church divided: “It is a matter of debate. But, many historians have seen it as highly probable and reliable. The earliest reference to St. Thomas preaching gospel to Brahmins is from St. Jerome of 4th century. Among the converts , the Brahmin converts seem to have been quite significant enough to attract the special attention of St. Jerome, who mentions that the apostle went “ut Christus apud Brachmanas praedicaret” (to preach Christ to the Brahmins),” he said. “This needs more investigation. It is more nuanced and complex. Brahmin does not mean one single category of social group. There were different categories of Brahmins in Kerala. It was not a period where there was absence of Brahmins. It’s true they came as a hegemonic group only in 8th Century. But, there were Brahmins as scattered and fragmented community even before that. Duties and obligations of Brahmins under Chera empire are mentioned in Sangam literature,” he said. Melekandathil also said that there are written documents of maritime trade agreement between Muziris (in Kerala) and Alexandria from 2nd century obtained from Vienna archive in 1985. The Bishop, who also serves the World Council of Churches as moderator of its Commission on World Mission and Evangelism (CWME), later added, “Many address me as ‘Thirumeni’, a myth created by the upper caste[7]. They can call me a friend or father. If they want it to be formal, it can be Bishop. We have to change and should change many things,” To make his point, the Bishop quoted writer OV Vijayan’s statement “The English language is the best weapon to challenge the caste”.  He had also supported the hartal organised by Dalit outfits on 09-04-2018, Monday. “Normally, I do not support hartals as such protests in Kerala have not served their purpose. But I support the Dalit hartal wholeheartedly as it is against the atrocities faced by the marginalised sections under the fascist and feudal system. The people who are opposing the strike should introspect over their approach and mentality to the caste system and Dalits,” he posted on Facebook[8].

SC- converted christians- controversy

Catholic drama of caste, casteism and savarna: Fr. Paul Thelakat, former Syro Malabar Church spokesperson, echoed Coorilose’s statement. “In India we have bane that we irrespective of our religion have Manu sleeping within our consciousness. Everyone wants to establish one’s own upper caste glory. It is found in the ancient Christians of Kerala e.g certain families claiming to have been baptised from Brahmin families by St Thomas himself. St Thomas is supposed to have come to Kerala, it would be in the first century. Brahmins came to south India only in the 8th century. I am sorry to say upper caste mentality can be found also in Marxists in Kerala. Even though Marxism has a universal humanistic ideology, we find the upper caste surname kept, like Nampoodirpad, Menon, Pillai, Nair etc,” he said. Firm on his position despite the sharp and mixed reactions to his statement, Coorilos later wrote on the same post: “I am adding this after reading many comments to this post. Many of you are calling me ‘Thirumeni’ (a feudal honorific). That’s also a product of the savarna consciousness. You can call me a friend or Father. Or, if you want to make it more formal, you can call me Bishop.” “(Writer) OV Vijayan had said that English is the best weapon to resist caste. We must change. Change is must,” he said.

Church corrects Thelekkat - MM- 15-04-2018

Rs 80 crores land sold for Rs 27.30 crore: Just like Vatican, the Indian Church has also been involved in many scandals from sex to money swindling and other activities. Particularly, from Kerala, the crimes related to the Church have been horrible from murder, sex and financial scams involving all types of priests, bishops and cardinals also. Pressure is mounting on Cardinal George Alencherry, head of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church based in Kerala, to resign after allegations that church land had been sold below market value in a deal that he had approved. Alencherry, 72, was ordained as a Cardinal, a priest of the highest rank in the Roman Catholic Church, by Pope Benedict XVI in February 2012. He is one of only five Cardinals in India. The deal in question concerns the sale of three acres of land in Kochi by the Ernakulam archdiocese in 2016 to repay a Rs 60-crore bank loan it had taken to build a medical college. The agent appointed by the church to conduct the deal had estimated the value of the land at Rs 27.30 crore, but the church has so far received only Rs 9.13 crore of that amount. However, priests and lay people critical of the action claim that the plot was actually worth at least Rs 80 crores However, Kerala Catholic Bishops Council (KCBC) doesn’t seemed to be amused over the controversy. “There is no need to discuss the issue now. Those who raised the issue should solve it,” said KCBC official spokesperson Fr Varghese Vallikkatt[9]. But church sources pointed that Fr Thelakkat’s statement was made in connection with the ongoing land controversy in the Eranakulam-Angamali archdiocese and the tiff between the Ernakulam-Angamali diocese and the Changanacherry archdiocese respectively[10].

© Vedaprakash

17-04-2018

CPM organises 'BEEF FESTIVAL' inaugurated by 'Fr' Paul Thelakkat. Reported with glee by 'THE HINDU'.

[1] Covai Post Network, Historian Narayanan rubbishes St Thomas’s visit to Kerala to convert Hindus, April 15, 2018.

[2] https://www.covaipost.com/kerala-news/historian-narayanan-rubbishes-st-thomass-visit-to-kerala-to-convert-hindus/

[3] Indian express, Kerala Jacobite Church Metropolitan Geevarghese Mor Coorilos fires salvo at faithful’s ‘false beliefs’, By Express News Service | Published: 10th April 2018 03:24 AM, Last Updated: 10th April 2018 03:24 AM

[4] http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/kerala/2018/apr/10/kerala-jacobite-church-metropolitan-geevarghese-mor-coorilos-fires-salvo-at-faithfuls-false-belief-1799309.html

[5] Outlook, Bishop Demolishes The Biggest Conversion ‘Myth’ of Kerala , 13 APRIL 2018 Last Updated at 5:21 PM.

[6] https://www.outlookindia.com/website/story/bishop-demolishes-the-biggest-conversion-myth-of-kerala/310974

[7] News.18, Histories of Old Christian Families in Kerala ‘Fabricated’, Chandrakanth Viswanath | News18Updated:April 10, 2018, 11:45 PM IST.

[8] https://www.news18.com/news/india/kerala-syrian-church-bishop-calls-histories-of-old-christian-families-in-kerala-fabricated-1714533.html

[9] Times of India, Fresh row in church over St Thomas’s ‘visit’ to Kerala, TNN | Apr 13, 2018, 10:50 IST

[10] https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/kochi/fresh-row-in-church-over-st-thomass-visit-to-kerala/articleshow/63742878.cms

 

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“Thomas myth” raked up by the Kerala Church to suppress the multi-crore land scam racist, liturgical and  catechetical problems (1)

April 17, 2018

“Thomas myth” raked up by the Kerala Church to suppress the multi-crore land scam racist, liturgical and  catechetical problems (1)

Saint Thomas myth book - Tamil and English

Why “Thomas myth” raises head then and there?: Definitely, 120 or 130 crores of Indians, hardly few lakhs would be worried about the myth, fable, legend, story, tale, parable etc., about Thomas, doubting Thomas, doubtful Thomas or saint Thomas of any category, character or thing. However, the fanatic Christians, in spite of unhistorical nature, then and there used to repeat like parrot, “St. Thomas visited India”! Even, I  did not know anything about this. However, when the nuisance interfered with academic curriculum of the schools, I brought out a book “Saint Thomas myth in India” in 1989[1], exposing the useless, utter nonsense and unhistorical narratives spread not in accordance with history or with historical analysis. Ishwar Sharan brought out “Mylapore Siva Temple and Myth of Saint Thomas” in 1991[2] and 2010[3] [these books can be downloaded from the links provided at the footnotes]. As 90% of Indians have been secular, they do not bother about such myths, as they are concerned about their livelihood, attending to family affairs and other important work. Yet, the Christians used to disturb them with the fairy tales. So now, in 2018, the myth has started exploding again for unknown reasons. First, the rivalry among the “Thomas church” groups was reported, later turning into multi-crore land scam involving cardinal, bishops, and other Christian priests. As Indians used to think, “It is all their internal affair,” they read, heard and ignored the news and reports. But, the Christians want to draw attention of others. So the myth-debate has started.

Attack on Chidananda sami and promoting Ghulam Ali

Attack on Hindus, Hindu religion etc: Unlike other states, in Kerala, not only, the Hindu population is less, but, also, Hindus are targeted by the dominant, Communist, Mohammedan and Christian forces by many means. Now, everything is viewed in political perspective as 2019 General elections are nearing. Moreover, in Kerala, the power has gone to the Communists from the Congress.

Religion Population %
Hindus 1,82,82,492 54.73
Muslims 88,73,472 26.56
Christians 61,41,269 18.38

Evidently, the 55% Hindu population has been divided mainly by communist ideology and secularist principles followed and of course, the caste division of the Hindus. However, the slogan “Congress-mukt Bharat” has caught up the educated elite of the Keralites and some of them have started drifting towards BJP, mainly because of the charismatic leadership of Modi. Even Congress leaders like Shashi Tharoor have appreciated Modi. The Christian clergy has been having dialogue with RSS cadre. However, the uncompromising Marxists and Mohammedans have been fighting with right-wing groups in Kerala, many times leading to violence. Under such circumstances, the Church in Kerala might resort to strategy to target Hindus under the guise of raking up “Brahmin-SC/Dalit” issue under the bogey of “thomas myth,” as that serves them in many ways.

Church refutes -corrects Thelekkat - Mathru Bhumi- 15-04-2018

The Syro-Malabar Church issued statement refuting Fr Paul Thelakkat who reportedly declared that “st Thomas never came to India”: The “Thomas-myth” has been the worst type of falsified Christian propaganda circulated in India, in spite of historians making tall claims about “secular history, “secular temper” to deal with history and all. Perhaps, in recent times, it has come out in the media. Amid a controversy triggered by reported remarks of a senior priest questioning the belief that St Thomas visited India in AD 52[4], the Syro-Malabar Church today said the disciple of Jesus Christ did visit India[5]. “The official stand of the Syro-Malabar Church is that St Thomas had visited India”, the Church said in a statement here[6]. The statement was issued after Fr Paul Thelakkat, a former spokesperson of the church, last week [08-04-2018, Sunday] reportedly said there was no evidence to suggest that St Thomas had come to India[7]. Some newspapers and TV news channels quoting former spokesperson of the Syro Malabar Church had reported there is no evidence to prove St Thomas had come to India[8]. Some media even said this is the official stand of Syro-Malabar Church. “This is baseless…,” it said. The Syro-Malabar Church originated from the evangelisation works of St Thomas, said the statement issued by Bishop Sebastian Vaniyappurackal[9]. “World famous historians have accepted it as a fact. Many historic documents are there to support this,” he said. The “Business Standard” carried the story with caution[10]. The propagandist church however did not name such “World famous historians”!

Fr Thelakkad Denies Saying That St Thomas Did not Visit Kerala, Mathrubhumi
Fr Thelakkat clarifies that he never questioned the belief of his coming but converting Brahmins: Evidently perturbed by the Church attack, Fr Thelakkat today [15-04-2018] said he had never made a statement about the traditional belief that St Thomas had come to India. He clarified he had made certain remarks regarding prevailing upper caste feelings in Church while joining a debate kick started by Bishop Geevarghese Mor Coorilos of the Niranam diocese of the Jacobite Syrian Church on the issue. After all, Catholic priest cannot go against the hierarchy, Pope and the Vatican. “We should not rely on glory of a caste or tribe. That is dangerous,” Thelakkat told PTI. The Jacobite priest had recently criticised some church members for conducting hollow family meetings. He had said in a Facebook post that some of the families believe in fake myths that their forefathers were members of the Brahmin community and St Thomas converted them to Christianity. These kinds of false beliefs should be broken, he had said. Whether Brahmins were or not, the motive behind such belief, the drama of opposing and supporting myth etc., in the context has to be analysed.

SC- converted christians- controversy

Christians cannot fool, hoodwink or suppress Indians for their denominations existing for their ow reasons: Syrian Christians are divided mainly into Syrian Catholic, Jacobite, Orthodox, Marthoma churches depending upon whether they owe their allegiance to the Pope in Rome, the Patriarch in Antioch, Catholicos in Kerala’s Kottayam or Metropolita in Thiruvalla. In other words, it is their theological, liturgical, catechetical problem as to how they have been divided or to be divided. They just want to provoke Hindus by raising the casteist issue to suppress their racist and denominational divisions. Coorilos, who belongs to Jacobite Church, has mercilessly swung an axe at the root of the age-old belief that is pervasive across all the four sects – that their ancestors are Namboodiris who were converted to Christianity by St Thomas. It also questions the existence of churches like Malayatoor that is famously believed to be the meditative halt of St Thomas during his Kerala leg of his sojourn. Brahmins’ conversion to Christianity under St. Thomas had been a point of dispute for long. .

The Papal bull Gregory VX accommmodating caste

Caste and Christianity – Pope’s tactful accommodation: The Pope Gregory XV (1621-23) has definitely accepted the caste. The Bull of Pope Gregory XV, “Bulla Romanae Sedis Antistitis”, dated 31 January 1623, accedes to the requests of the missionaries to accommodate themselves to certain caste practices and usages of the new converts[11]. Why not then the present Pope annul the Papal Bull issued, instead of recollecting what he had said in 1986. In fact, after his visit, there had been so many “caste problems and issues” within the Indian Church. The Supreme Court itself pronounced that if the Chuch wants reservation based on untouchability and caste, such factors of existence in Christianity should be proven (Soosai vs UOI – AIR 1986). Then, started the research of Athony Raj, SJ with funds to prove that untouchability and Caste system were there in Christianity and practiced even today. The Dutch Reformed Church of South Africa (DRC) has separate Churches for whites, black and coloured ones. The Apartheid Enquiry Committee in its report clearly pointed out that the Bible was responsible for caste like division. Why then even in non-Indian societies such divisions should exist?

© Vedaprakash

17-04-2018

caste, christianity, SC- reservation

[1] The Tamil book, book “Saint Thomas myth in India” – can be downloaded from here –https://onedrive.live.com/?authkey=%21AE9JnTvwIEO8PVc&cid=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6&id=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6%21144&parId=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6%211423&o=OneUp

[2]  Ishwar Sharan’’s “Mylapore Siva Temple and Myth of Saint Thomas” 1991 edition can be downloaded from here – https://onedrive.live.com/?authkey=%21AFZpdl8nyZY-SGE&cid=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6&id=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6%211429&parId=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6%211423&o=OneUp

[3]Ishwar Sharan’’s “Mylapore Siva Temple and Myth of Saint Thomas” 2010 edition can be downloaded from here –https://onedrive.live.com/?authkey=%21APmNJmffAGILUmY&cid=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6&id=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6%21154&parId=F97FE5FFAA8BA3D6%211423&o=OneUp

[4] Note in spite of the fact that CE and BCE notations are used by  historians and researchers, the media persons still use the “christian” notations!

[5] Malayala Manorma, Church corrects Fr Thelekkatt, says there is proof of St Thomas visiting India, Sunday April 2018 08:28 PM IST.

[6] https://english.manoramaonline.com/news/kerala/2018/04/15/st-thomas-church-india.html

[7] Mathrubhumi, Syro-Malabar Church refutes Fr.Paul Thelakkat’s remark on St. Thomas’ India visit.,, Published: Apr 15, 2018, 02:27 PM IST……

[8] http://english.mathrubhumi.com/news/kerala/syro-malabar-church-refutes-fr-paul-thelakkat-s-remark-on-st-thomas-india-visit-1.2744403

[9] Business Standard, Church says St Thomas visited India, Press Trust of India | Kochi, Last Updated at April 15, 2018 19:35 IST; First Published: Sun, April 15 2018. 19:35 IST.

[10] This is the appened warning: (This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

http://www.business-standard.com/article/pti-stories/church-says-st-thomas-visited-india-118041500554_1.html

[11] http://hindooraashtrcom.fatcow.com/pdf/Caste-in-Christianity-Papal-Bull.pdf