Mar Thoma II

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His Beatitude
Mar Thoma II
Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church
Installed 1670
Term ended 1686
Predecessor Mar Thoma I
Successor Mar Thoma III
Orders
Consecration 1670.
Personal details
Died April 14, 1686
Niranam
Buried Niranam Valia palli. (Niranam St Mary's Orthodox Church)

Mar Thoma II was the second Metropolitan of the Malankara Church from 1670 to 1686. During his period a number of bishops from Syria came to Kerala. Due to persecutions and the dangerous routes none of them could return.

Introduction[edit]

On the South Western coast of India lies a small state known as Kerala It was here in the first century, Thomas the Apostle arrived to preach the gospel to the Jewish community. Some of the Jews and locals became followers of Jesus of Nazareth. They were known as Malabar Nasrani people and their church as Malankara Church. They followed a unique Hebrew-Syriac Christian tradition which included several Jewish elements and Indian customs.

In Malankara (Kerala) St. Thomas did not appoint any bishops, but an elder (Mooppen in Malayalam) was selected to lead the people. The parish leader was called Edavaka Mooppen and the church as a whole had a Malankara Mooppen. This was the tradition till 1653.

Canons of the Synod of Diamper, Malayalam versions [1] use these titles throughout the report except in three places where they use the Latin word archidiāconus.[2][3] There is no chance for the Malankara Church to use this Latin word. Portuguese were not familiar with Malayalam word Malankara Mooppen and so they might have used Latin word Archidiāconus. The Malaylam name Jathikku Karthavian, given by some historians was not used in the Malayalam version of the canons.

Malankara Throne

After the great swearing in 1653 it became necessary to appoint a bishop. For this purpose a special chair was made and the first bishop of Malankara church was enthroned. This throne used for this consecration of Mar Thoma I, is in the possession of the Mar Thoma Church and is kept at Tiruvalla. It has been used in the installation of every Mar Thoma Metropolitan, to this day, so that the continuity of the throne of Mar Thoma is ensured.This was the throne used for the consecration of Mar Thoma II.

Early life.[edit]

Kuravilangad is a town located in the Kottayam district of Kerala, South India. The town is situated in the Meenachil Taluk, about 22 km (14 mi) north of Kottayam. Pakalomattom family was one of the oldest families at Kuravilangad. The second Mar Thoma was born at Parampil house of this family.

Consecration[edit]

The leaders of the Malankara Church selected a nephew (brother's son) of Mar Thoma I as his successor. He was consecrated by Mar Thoma I and the Antiochean patriarchal delegate Mar Gregorios Abdul Jaleel who was the archbishop of Jerusalem. He was the second Mar Thoma who ascended the throne of Malankara church. When Mar Thoma I died on April 25, 1670 Mar Thoma II, took charge of the Malankara Church.

Visits by foreign bishops[edit]

Four foreign bishops from Syria arrived in Kerala during his lifetime. Journey from one country to another was not that easy on those days. So none of them were able to return. to their home land. While they were there in Kerala, they were not able to do much except teaching Syriac and consecrating bishops if they were invited. People called them Muthappen (elder father).

Mar Gregorios Abdul Jaleel, of Antioch who arrived in Kerala in 1665, was the Syriac Orthodox Metropolitan of Jerusalem. He was the one who consecrated Mar Thoma I. After the consecration of Mar Thoma II, he spent a retired life. He died on April 27, 1671 or 1681 and was laid to rest at St.Thomas church, North Paravur.

Mar Anthraos and three of his brothers from middle east arrived at Mulanthuruthy church in 1678. Later on they moved to various churches and arrived at St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral, Puthencavu (near Chengannur). On February 29, 1692 while visiting Kallada, he went to the nearby river and was drowned. Two of his brothers went back to Mulanthuruthy and raised families there. Descendants of one of them later established the Malabar Independent Syrian Church.[4]

Eldho Mor Baselios and Mar Ivanios Episcopa arrived at Kothamangalam on September 14, 1685. Soon after the arrival Mar Baselious raised Mar Ivanios as Metropolitan (archbishop) with the title Mar Ivanios Hidayulla. After a few days on September 29, 1685 Mar Baselious died and was buried at Kothamangalam cheria palli. He is venerated as a great saint and celebrations are held annually in many churches in Malankara.

Mar Ivanios Hidayuttulla who came with Mar Baselious Yeldho Maphriyano, was consecrated as metropolitan in September 1985. He was able to consecrate Mar Thoma III and Mar Thoma IV. Died on August 13, 1693 and was buried at Mulanthuruthy palli.

Church administration[edit]

Synod of Diamper was held in 1599. By the time of Mar Thoma II, became the Metropolitan of malankara in 1670, many of the Syriac practices were already reintroduced into Malankara Church. The use of western calendar, baptismal fonts and having pulpits are some of them. During his time priests were encouraged to marry.

Last days[edit]

The Metropolitans visiting a parish stayed in the balcony room of the church. On April 14, 1686 while Mar Thoma II was at Niranam church, there was thunderstorm. Mar Thoma was struck by lightning and died. He was laid to rest inside Niranam church (Niranam St.Mary's Orthodox Church)


Preceded by
Mar Thoma I
Metropolitan of the Malankara Church
1670–1686
Succeeded by
Mar Thoma III

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Five of the Malayalam versions were available in 1952.
  2. ^ Daniel, K.N. Canons of the Synod of Diamper, prepared using five of the available Malayalam versions.
  3. ^ Antonio de Gouvea (1606) Jornada do Arcebispo Aleixo de Menezes quando foy as Serra do Malaubar.
  4. ^ Souvenir published by Puthencavu St.Mary's Orthodox Cathedral. Page 209-211.

Further reading[edit]

    1. Mathew, N.M. ‘’Malankara Marthoma Sabha Charitram’’, (History of the Marthoma Church), Volume 1.(2006), Volume II (2007). Volume III (2008) Pub. E.J.Institute, Thiruvalla