Mathews Mar Barnabas

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Mathews Mar Barnabas
Church Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church
Diocese Ankamaly Diocese
Kottayam Diocese
Idukki Diocese
American Diocese
Northeast American Diocese
Ordination Metropolitan May 15, 1978
by Baselios Mar Thoma Mathews I
Personal details
Born (1924-08-09)August 9, 1924
Valayanchirangara, Kerala
Died December 9, 2012(2012-12-09)
Thiruvilla, Kerala

Mathews Mar Barnabas (9 August 1924–9 December 2012) was a Metropolitan of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church.[1]

Early life[edit]

Mathews Mar Barnabas was born as one of a set of twins to Kuruvilla and Mariamma, a couple of the Kidangethu Thompra family in Kallarackaparampil house at Valayanchirangara.[2] In his childhood he was called Mathukutty. At the age of seven, Mathukutty determined to become a monk and started to practice with vegetarian food. Mathukutty and his twin brother used to stay in the Gathsemon Dayara monastery at Piramadam, near Muvattupuzha during their vacation and experienced the monastic life under the guidance of their uncle Fr K.P. Paulose.

Mathukutty's grandfather and uncle were Orthodox priests.


He studied Biology at Madras Christian College and while he served the parish in Secunderabad he did his masters in Botany in Osmania University. He began theological studies under the guidance of his uncle Fr K. P. Paulose. In 1949 he joined the Orthodox Theological Seminary as a special student and studied Syriac for two years. While he was the vicar of the Calcutta parish, he studied in the Bishop's College, Calcutta and earned his B. D. degree from the Serampore University, as an external student.


Catholicos Baselios Geevarghese II ordained him as a deacon in 1943, at his home parish, St Peter and St Paul Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, Valayanchirangara, Kerala, India. In 1951 Metropolitan Augen Mar Thimotheos ordained him to the priesthood.

As a deacon, he was a teacher at Kurppumpady M.G. M. High School in 1947. He taught there for two years and continued to teach for another two years at the MD Seminary High School, Kottayam, until he was ordained to priesthood. He also was a lecturer in the Orthodox Theological Seminary at Kottayam from 1967 to 1972. During this period he was the resident faculty member at the seminary and full-time warden. He also served as chaplain in the Kolenchery Medical Mission Hospital from 1972-1978.

Ordination as Metropolitan[edit]

Malankara Association held in 1977 elected Fr K. K. Mathews as a metropolitan of the church. On May 15, 1978, Baselios Mar Thoma Mathews I consecrated him as bishop at Pazhanji Church, with the ecclesiastical title Mathews Mar Barnabas and appointed as assistant bishop of the Ankamali and Kottayam Dioceses.[3] In 1982 he was appointed as the metropolitan of the newly formed Idikki Diocese. In 1992/93, Mathews Mar Barnabas was appointed as the diocesan metropolitan of the undivided American Diocese.


On January 18, 2011, the Catholicos of The East and Malankara Metropolitan, Baselius Mar Thoma Paulose II, accepted Mathews Mar Barnabas' request to be relieved from administrative responsibilities as diocesan metropolitan of the Northeast American Diocese. Mathews Mar Barnabas left the United States on May 25, 2011.


Mathews Mar Barnabas was admitted to Pushpagiri Hospital, Thiruvilla (Kerala) for a pain-related issue. He died at around 3:15 AM (Indian Standard Time) on 9 December 2012, and was buried at St Peter's and St Paul's Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, Valayanchirangara, Perumbavoor, Kerala, India.

See also[edit]


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