Philipose Mar Chrysostom
|His Grace The Most Revd
Philipose Mar Chrysostom
Mar Thoma Valiya Metropolitan (Mar Thoma XX)
|Mar Thoma Valiya Metropolitan|
|Church||Mar Thoma Syrian Church|
|Installed||23 October 1999.|
|Predecessor||Alexander Mar Thoma (Mar Thoma XIX)|
|Successor||Joseph Mar Thoma (Mar Thoma XXI)|
|Ordination||1 January 1944|
|Consecration||23 May 1953.|
|Birth name||Philip Oommen|
April 27, 1918 |
|Residence||Jubilee Home, Maramon, Kozhencherry, Pathanamthitta|
Philipose Mar Chrysostom Mar Thoma Valiya Metropolitan (born Philip Oommen on 27 April 1918) is the Valiya (senior) Metropolitan Bishop of the Mar Thoma Church.
He has been a bishop for 61 years, 10 months and 9 days, which makes him the longest-serving bishop in India. He is addressed and referred to as Chrysostom Thirumeni or Valiya Thirumeni. He is also known as the bishop with a golden tongue due to his uncanny ability to communicate theological doctrines with people through humor in ease. At the time of consecration, he was given the episcopal title Mar Chrysostom.
Early life and education
He did his schooling at Maramon, Kozhencherry and Eraviperoor schools, and went on to graduate from Union Christian College, Aluva. During his early childhood days, the independence movement was very active and the youth engaged in different social movements. These movements reflected in his decision to join in evangelistic activities in Ankola Aashram along with the Revd P. J. Thomas.
Realizing the need for three more bishops for the Mar Thoma Church, the Church Mandalam (representative assembly) in 1950 decided to consecrate three more bishops; Oommen was one of those selected. During his Bishopship, he was the president of National Council of Churches, India and has attended World Council of Churches at Evanston in 1954 and Uppsala in 1968. He also attended the Second Vatican Council. He has a deep concern for the upliftment of the community and renders valuable services to the ecumenical cause.
On 23 May 1953, Juhanon Mar Thoma Metropolitan assisted by Mathews Mar Athanasius Episcopa ordained Philip Oommen as Episcopa and gave him the episcopal title, Philipose Mar Chrysostom. M.G.Chandy (Alexander Mar Theophilus) and P.Thomas (Thomas Mar Athanasius) were ordained on the same day.
In 1954 Mar Chrysostom joined St. Augustine's College, Canterbury, United Kingdom to further his theological studies.
He was designated as Suffragan Metropolitan in May 1978. After Alexander Mar Thoma Metropolitan stepped aside from the daily administration of the Church due to physical ailments on 15 March 1999, Mar Chrysostom was designated Officiating Metropolitan.
Mar Chrysostom was installed as Metropolitan on 23 October 1999, when Alexander Mar Thoma Metropolitan was made Valia Metrapolitan. (Senior Metropolitan)
Valiya (Senior) metropolitan
A traditional welcome song for Bishops in Syriac (Transliterated in English), when they visit individual parishes.
Here is the version of it sung for Philipose Mar Chrysostom Mar Thoma Valiya Metropolitan.
Thobasalom aabunu shio
"Mar Chrysostame" royo gabiyo
Onak lah so sok sahayo
Val burkro sok him sahayo (2)
Laalo ho moudayo dak bak loroyo
Bas math houdha yo sufeeho hodhayo
Mekkil mak yab kooley hailan
Neehe aaboon "Mar Chrysostame"
Mensma le be sookoyaan
The meaning is,
We welcome you, Our shepherd "Mar Chrysostam", We the herd have wished for your presence and good health. We pray to our Lord, to bless you with all by thee grace. We sing to our Lord, about you as our good Shepherd, "Mar Chrysostam". Lead us always through our adversities, and we are grateful for your services.
Philipose Mar Chrysostom Mar Thoma Metropolitan completed 90 years on 27 April 2008. As part of the celebration Mar Thoma Church devised a project, Navathy Home Project, to support and enable 1500 families in India, irrespective of cast, creed or religion, to build a home of their own. (Malayalam – navathy – ninetieth anniversary). Cost of each home was Rs. 1,50,000. (US$2400). Each house consisted of a sit out, a drawing room, a bed room, a kitchen, a dining room and a toilet. Mar Thoma Church members donated so much that the project was a great success, that it extended from India up to Mexico.
Longest reigning bishop
He is the longest reigning bishop in India and has completed 61 years, 10 months and 9 days as a bishop.
He is now 96 years, 11 months and 5 days old.
Alexander Mar Thoma
(Mar Thoma XIX)
|Metropolitans of the
Malankara Mar Thoma Syrian Church
Joseph Mar Thoma
(Mar Thoma XXI)
- Mar Thoma Church
- Syrian Malabar Nasrani
- Saint Thomas Christians
- Christianity in India
- List of Syrian Malabar Nasranis
- Juhanon Mar Thoma
- Alexander Mar Thoma
- Joseph Mar Thoma
- Eapen, K.V. (2001). '’Malankara Marthoma Suryani Sabha Charitram'’. (History of Malankara Marthoma Syrian Church). Pub: Kallettu, Muttambalam, Kottayam.
- 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
- Malankara Mar Thoma Syrian Church. (2006). "His Grace the Most Rev Dr Philipose Mar Chrysostom."
- Zac Varghese & Mathew A. Kallumpram. (2003). '’Glimpses of Mar Thoma Church History'’. London, England. ISBN 81-900854-4-1
- George C Abraham. A Golden Tongue to Glorify his Master- Wit and Wisdom of Mar Chrysostom,Dawn India Books, Thiruvalla, India, 2002