T. B. D. Prakasa Rao

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Bishop Emeritus
T. B. D. Prakasa Rao
Ayyagaru
Bishop Emeritus-in-Krishna-Godavari Diocese
Native name మహ గనుడు టి. బి. డి. ప్రకస రావు అయ్యాగారు
Church Church of South India
Diocese Krishna-Godavari Diocese
See St. Paul's Centenary Church, Vijayawada (since 2001, the Cathedra of the Bishop has been shifted to St. Andrew's Cathedral, Machilipatnam)
Elected 1981
In office 1981–2001
Predecessor N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel
Successor G. Dyvasirvadam
Orders
Ordination by President of the Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church Society, Guntur
Consecration 18 November 1981[1]
by Moderator Solomon Doraiswamy (Principal Consecrator) and Deputy Moderator I. Jesudason (Co-consecrator)
Rank Bishop
Personal details
Birth name Thumaty Babu Deva Prakasa Rao[2][3]
Born Andhra Pradesh, India
Nationality Indian
Denomination Christianity
Residence Bandlaguda Jagir, Rajendranagar mandal, R. R. District, Telangana
Occupation Anglican priest
Previous post Auxiliary Secretary, Bible Society of India Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary, Bible House, Secunderabad (relocated to Guntur in 2016)[4](1976-1981)
Education B.A., B.D.
Alma mater Andhra-Christian College, Guntur, Andhra Pradesh and Gurukul Lutheran Theological College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

Bishop Emeritus T. B. D. Prakasa Rao[5][6] was the fourth[1] Bishop[7] - in - Krishna-Godavari of the Church of South India who occupied the Cathedra placed at CSI-St. Paul's Cathedral,[8] Vijayawada. The Bishopric of Prakasa Rao lasted for two decades from 1981 through 2001.

Studies[edit]

Prakasa Rao hailed from the Protestant Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church Society[1] headquartered in Guntur. After graduate studies, Rao discerned his avocation towards priesthood during the incumbency of President G. Devasahayam of the Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church Society who sent him to the Gurukul Lutheran Theological College, Chennai affiliated to India's first[9] University, the Senate of Serampore College (University) {a University under Section 2 (f) of the University Grants Commission Act, 1956}[10]with degree-granting authority validated by a Danish Charter and ratified by the Government of West Bengal where Rao had his ministerial formation leading to Bachelor of Divinity. Rao's other companions included M. Victor Paul, AELC and B. Victor Emmanuel, STBC.

Ecclesiastical ministry[edit]

Pastoral[edit]

Lutheran[edit]

After returning from Chennai, Rao was ordained as a Lutheran[1] Priest by then President of the Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church Society and began pastoring parishes of the Churches under the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church Society. After a period of ecclesiastical ministry, Prakasa Rao expressed his views on Anglicanism to the Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church Society led by President K. Devasahayam who willingly excardinated Rao from the Society enabling his incardination into the Church of South India by the Moderator N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel.

Anglican[edit]

Upon the incardination of Rao into the Church of South India, he was assigned the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of Krishna-Godavari Diocese where he began pastoring parishes falling under the purview of the Diocese from Visakhapatnam district through Guntur district.

Ecumenical[edit]

The Bible Society of India Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary is one of the Auxiliaries of the Bible Society of India headquartered in Bangalore and works for the cause of the Bible in an ecumenical environment with the Roman Catholics, the Orthodox and the Protestants. In 1976,[11][12] when B. G. Prasada Rao, CSI, then Auxiliary Secretary of the Bible Society of India Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary was recalled to the Church of South India Society, Prakasa Rao was appointed in his place by the Bible Society of India led by the rural Pastor A. E. Inbanathan, then General Secretary who had much understanding of the Church in India and more so with fellow clergy. Subsequently, the Krishna-Godavari Diocese of the Church of South India led by N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel loaned the services of Prakasa Rao to the Bible Society of India enabling Rao to take up the ecumenical work at the Auxiliary which was led by notable predecessors beginning with E. Prakasam, AELC, A. B. Masilamani, CBCNC and B. G. Prasada Rao, CSI. During his administrative stint with the Bible Society of India Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary, Prakasa Rao resided in the Bible House,[13] a prominent landmark in Secunderabad.

After a six-year ecumenical ministry which began in 1976, Prakasa Rao was recalled in 1981 by the Church of South India to resume his ecclesiastical ministry. Rao was succeeded as Auxiliary Secretary by L. Prakasam of the Convention of Baptist Churches of Northern Circars.

Bishopric[edit]

The Krishna-Godavari Diocese of the Church of South India was formed in 1947, the very year of the formation of the Church of South India at the St. George's Cathedral, Chennai. The Diocese was led by pioneer Bishops Y. Muthyalu, A. B. Eliott and N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel.

Prakasa Rao was incardinated into the Church of South India during the Bishopric of N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel who occupied the Cathedra at Eluru from 1961 to 1978. Due to an ecclesiastical event that took place in 1978, the Krishna-Godavari Diocese came under the purview of the Church of South India Synod led by Deputy Moderator Solomon Doraiswamy who oversaw the administration of the Diocese through clergy consisting of H. D. L. Abraham followed by Victor Premasagar to perform the ecclesiastical responsibilities in the Diocese.

During the seventeenth Church of South India Synod held at Chennai in 1980, the Synod elected Solomon Doraiswamy and I. Jesudason as the Moderator and Deputy Moderator for the biennium 1980-1982. It was during this period that the Church of South India Synod pursued the ecclesiastical matters in the Krishna-Godavari Diocese leading to the election of T. B. D. Prakasa Rao as the fourth Bishop - in - Krishna-Godavari.

Rao was consecrated on 18 November 1981[1] at the CSI-St. Paul's Centenary Church, Vijayawada by Solomon Doraiswamy and I. Jesudason in the presence of other clergy consisting of Victor Premasagar, the General Secretary of the Church of South India. Rao led the Diocese from Vijayawada throughout his bishopric from 1981 through 2001.

In 1992, Prakasa Rao[14] took part in the consecration of the Old Testament Scholar, S. John Theodore as the fourth Bishop - in - Karimnagar held at the CSI-Wesley Cathedral in Karimnagar in the presence of Moderator Ryder Devapriam and Deputy Moderator Jason Dharmaraj, Bishop Victor Premasagar, Bishops Emeriti Bobbili Prabhudass,[14] G. B. Devasahayam,[14] and K. E. Swamidass[14] and other clergy.

In matters of ecclesiastical administration, Prakasa Rao involved Sociologists[15] for the Clergy retreats as early as 1995[15] itself. It was Prakasa Rao who dedicated[16] the J. Sikile School in 1984 at Narsapur.

After nearly two decades of Bishopric, Rao retired in 2001 on attaining superannuation leading to sede vacante following which the Church of South India Synod huddled and conducted elections resulting in the unanimous election of the Systematic theologian G. Dyvasirvadam as G. D. V. Prasad, a companion of Dyvasirvadam, refrained from contesting in order to facilitate G. Dyvasirvadam to be appointed as Bishop setting a precedent.

Lambeth Conferences[edit]

As a Bishop of the Church of South India, part of the Anglican Communion worldwide, Rao was entitled to attend the decennial Lambeth Conferences presided by the Archbishop of Canterbury. During the bishopric of Rao from 1981 through 2001 as Bishop - in - Krishna-Godavari Diocese, he had attended the twelfth and the thirteenth Lambeth Conferences in 1988 and 1998 presided by Robert Runcie and George Carey respectively.

Governor[edit]

During the Bishopric of Prakasa Rao from 1981 to 2001, he was ex officio member of the Board of Governors representing the Krishna-Godavari Diocese at the near-ecumenical[17] Andhra Christian Theological College, Hyderabad comprising the Anglicans, Baptists, Lutherans and the Methodists. As Governor of the College, Prakasa Rao provided the required management skills enabling the administration of the Seminary making it a notable institution under the Senate of Serampore College (University). Incidentally, the Systematic theologian G. Dyvasirvadam, also hailing from the Krishna-Godavari Diocese was a member of the Faculty of the College coinciding with the Governorship of Rao.

During the academic year 1995-1996, Prakasa Rao was elected as Chairperson of the Board of Governors of the College during the Principalship of R. Yesuratnam of the Diocese of Medak. After two decades of administration at the College, Rao resigned from the Board of Governors in 2001 due to his retirement from the Church of South India on attaining superannuation.

Honours[edit]

In 2001,[18] the Centre for Religious Studies at the Andhra University, Waltair felicitated Prakasa Rao in his capacity as Bishop - in - Krishna-Godavari.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e K. M. George, Church of South India: Life in Union, 1947-1997, Jointly published by Indian Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, New Delhi and Christava Sahitya Samithi, Tiruvalla, 1999. pp. 46, 65-67, 97, 104-108. [1]
  2. ^ The Church of England Yearbook, Volume 115, Church Information Office and Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1999, p.330. [2]
  3. ^ The Church of England Yearbook, Volume 117, Church Information Office and Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 2001, p.373. [3]
  4. ^ The Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary has been relocated from Secunderabad to Guntur in February 2016. See BSI auxiliary office opened in Guntur in The Hindu, Guntur, February 3, 2016. [4]
  5. ^ The Church of England Yearbook, Volume 113, Church Information Office and Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1997, p.315. [5]
  6. ^ The Church of England Yearbook, Volume 114, Church Information Office and Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1998, p.314. [6]
  7. ^ Mar Aprem, Indian Christian who is who, Bombay Parish Church of the East, Mumbai, 1983. pp. 43 and 69. [7]
  8. ^ The Cathedra of the Bishop which was placed at Eluru during the bishopric of N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel was shifted to Vijayawada. Later in 2001, on the election of G. Dyvasirvadam, the Cathedra was again shifted to Machilipatnam.
  9. ^ Sankar Ray, The Hindu (Business Line), 11 April 2008 Almost a century later, the charter was endorsed officially under the Bengal Govt Act IV of 1918. Internet, accessed 30 November 2008. [8]
  10. ^ The Senate of Serampore College (University) is a University within the meaning of Section 2 (f) of the UGC Act, 1956 under which a University means a University established or incorporated by or under a Central Act, a Provincial Act or a State Act, and includes any such institution as may, in consultation with the University concerned, be recoginsed by the Commission in accordance with the regulations made in this behalf under this Act. The UGC took the opinion that the Senate fell under the purview of Section 2 (f) of the said Act since The Serampore College Act, 1918 was passed by the Government of West Bengal.
  11. ^ Prema Sakshi, Volume 6, Issue 4, August 2008. pp.11-41. Prema Sakshi, a monthly registered (APTEL 07419/01/2002) magazine published by I. C. Ashok Kumar at Neena Publications, Door Number 1-5-4/1/A, First Floor, Behind Sai Raja Deluxe Cinema, Musheerabad, Hyderabad 500 048.
  12. ^ Annual Report of the American Bible Society, American Bible Society, 1975. pp.83, 90, and 107. [9]
  13. ^ Annual Report of the American Bible Society, Volume 165, American Bible Society, 1980, p.90. [10]
  14. ^ a b c d National Council of Churches Review, Volume 113, National Christian Council of India, 1993, p.193. [11]
  15. ^ a b Religion and Society, Volume 49, Issue 1, Volume 50, Issue 1, 2004, p.56. [12]
  16. ^ J. Sikile School, Narsapur. [13]
  17. ^ Near-ecumenical comprises a few Protestant Church societies.
  18. ^ Andhra University, Department of Arts and Commerce. [14]

Further reading[edit]

Honorary titles
Preceded by
N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel, CSI
1961–1978
Member, Board of Governors

Andhra Christian Theological College,
Hyderabad
1981–2001

Succeeded by
G. Dyvasirvadam, CSI
2001–
Preceded by
K. Nathaniel, AELC
1993–1995
Chairperson, Board of Governors,

Andhra Christian Theological College,
Hyderabad
1995-1996

Succeeded by
K. Jesudas, SALC
1996-1997
Religious titles
Preceded by
N. D. Ananda Rao Samuel, CSI
1961–1978
Bishop - in - Krishna-Godavari Diocese,
(Church of South India)
Vijayawada

1981–2001
Succeeded by
G. Dyvasirvadam, CSI
2001–
Other offices
Preceded by
B. G. Prasada Rao, CSI
1969–1976
Auxiliary Secretary
Bible Society of India Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary,
Secunderabad

1976–1981
Succeeded by
L. Prakasam, CBCNC
1982–1998