UK, Europe and Africa Malankara Orthodox Diocese
|Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church|
|Founder||St. Thomas the Apostle|
|Primate||Baselios Mar Thoma Paulose II|
|Headquarters||London, England, UK|
|Possessions||United Arab Emirates, United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, South Africa, Kuwait, Malaysia, New Zealand, Germany, Switzerland, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Singapore and Australia,|
|Language||Malayalam, English, Hindi, Konkani, Kannada, Syriac|
The roots of this parish can be traced back to the 1930s. Abu Alexios of the Bethany monastery (later Bishop Mar Theodosius) was the first priest of the church ever to visit the UK. Canon John Douglas and others formed an association called 'The Friends of the Syrian Church' to render help to the ancient church in India by offering higher theological training; Abu Alexios of the Bethany monastery (later Bishop Mar Theodosius) was the first candidate chosen. He participated in the Jubilee celebrations of the Community of Resurrection, Mirfield and made connections with several religious communities in UK.
The second priest who came to UK under this scheme was Fr. T.V.John of U.C. college Alwaye in 1934. He conducted Holy Qurbana in Malayalam in Kings College chapel. Several others came to the UK under this programme. Catholicose, Moran Mar Baselios Mar Geeverghese II visited in 1937, accompanied by Rambans C M Thomas (later Metropolitan Mar Dioionysius) and Abu Alexiosto for the second "Faith and Order Conference" of the World Council of Churches in Edinburgh. After the conference Ramban C.M.Thomas stayed with the Cowley fathers for studies in Oxford and conducted services.
In the 1950s and 60s the Malayalee Christian community had grown gradually, however, services were held only occasionally by visiting priests and prelates. They include Metropolitan Mathews Mar Coorilos (late catholicos Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Mathews II) Fr.K Philipose (late metropolitan Mar Theophilus) Fr.Dr.C.T.Eapen, Fr.P.S.Samuel, and others. Fr.P.V.Joseph (late Mar Pachomios), Fr.Yohannan (late metropolitan Mar Athanasius) came to UK for higher studies and served the community. Fr. Philipose visited the congregation on several occasions during his trips to Europe in connection with the various programs of the World Council of Churches, and later became bishop Mar Theophilus. Dn. K.G.George (later bishop Geverghese Mar Ivanios) followed the footsteps and stayed with Cawley Fathers in Oxford for six years. All these years services were conducted in Indian YMCA chapel, Fitzroy Square, London and all the Malayalee Christians participated irrespective of their denominational differences. In early 1970s Geverghese Mar Osthathios organized the St. Gregorios fellowship during one his pastoral visits. The community grew in size with the arrival of more migrants; in 1974 they split on denominational grounds. Members of Orthodox Syrian Church and Marthoma Church formed separate congregations and commenced worshipping separately.
When the diocese outside Kerala was re-organized, diocesan metropolitan Thomas Mar Makarios visited the UK church in 1976 and declared as a parish with St.Gregorios of Parumala as patron saint; Fr. Abraham Aluckal (later bishop Mar Severios) was appointed as its first vicar. In the 1979 re-organization of the dioceses, the London parish came under the diocese of Delhi under the pastoral care of Paulos Mar Gregorios, who visited the parish on a regular basis. When the new diocese of Europe, UK and Canada was formed in 1993, this parish came under the jurisdiction of Thomas Mar Makarios. With the establishment of the new diocese of UK, Europe and Africa, Mathews Mar Thimothios took charge as the Metropolitan of the London parish.
Fr. Mathews M. Daniel, Philipose Mar Eusebius, Kuriakose Cor-Episcopa, O. Thomas, Geverghese Mar Coorilose, Yakoob Mar Elias (Fr. V. M. James), Fr. Yohannan Ramban, Fr. Skariah Ramban, and Fr.Abrahm Thomas served in succession as vicars of the parish. Services were held in London since 1978 in the Church of England St. Andrew-by-the-Wardrobe Church, and since 2005 in St.Gregorios Church Brockley, London.
The Diocese of UK, Europe and Africa was formed in 2009, with Diocesan Metropolitan Mathews Mar Thimothios. Diocese of UK, Europe and Africa includes the territorial area of England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Germany, France, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Denmark, Turkey, Greece, Cape Town in South Africa and Kenya.
The Diocesan headquarters is in St. Gregorios Indian Orthodox Church, Cranfield Road, Brockley, London. The Administrative Annexe in India is in Parumala Seminary. This was consecrated by Baselios Mar Thoma Didymus I Valiya Bava. As of 2013[update] the diocese had 31 Parishes and Congregations.
|1979||2008||H.G. Dr. Thomas Mar Makarios||Died on 23 Feb 2008 in Newcastle, England|
|2009||Present||H.G. Dr. Mathews Mar Thimothios|
List of Parishes in UK
- St. Gregorios Indian Orthodox Church, London, England, UK
- St. Stephen's Indian Orthodox Church, Birmingham, England, UK
- St. Mary's Indian Orthodox Church, Bristol, England, UK
- St. Thomas Indian Orthodox Church, Cambridge, England, UK
- St. Mary's Indian Orthodox Church, Coventry, England, UK
- St. Thomas Indian Orthodox Church, Dublin, Ireland
- St. Gregorios Indian Orthodox Congregation, Glasgow, Scotland, UK
- St. George’s Indian Orthodox Congregation, Leicester, England, UK
- St. Thomas Indian Orthodox Church, Liverpool, England, UK
- St. George's Indian Orthodox Church, Manchester, England, UK
- St. Dionysius Indian Orthodox Church, Northampton, England, UK
- St. Mary's Indian Orthodox Church, Oxford, England, UK
- St. Thomas Indian Orthodox Church, Dorset, England, UK. www.indianorthodoxdorset.com
- St. Gregorios Indian Orthodox Church, Portsmouth, England, UK
- St. George's Indian Orthodox Church, Sheffield, England, UK
- St. Thomas Indian Orthodox Church, Sunderland, England, UK