His Holiness Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Mathews III was enthroned as the Supreme Head of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church in India, Catholicos of the East and Malankara Metropolitan.
The General Secretary of the Christian Conference of Asia, (CCA) Dr Mathews George Chunakara, extended congratulations and prayerful wishes on behalf of the CCA.
Succeeding His Holiness Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Paulose II, who had passed away earlier this year in July, Baselios Marthoma Mathews III was unanimously elected as the new Head of the Church by the church’s supreme decision-making body, known as the Malankara Syrian Christian Association, during its 57th meeting on 14 October 2021.
The enthronement was held on 15 October 2021 at the holy shrine of St. Gregorios of Parumala in Kerala, India.
The congratulatory message from the CCA General Secretary reads: “We remember with gratitude the many decades of your pastoral ministry and leadership as well as your significant contributions in the area of philanthropic endeavours for the uplift of the poor and the needy and thank God almighty for touching so many lives through your dedicated service.”
The CCA General Secretary’s message to the newly enthroned ecclesiastical leader of an ancient Asian church further conveyed, “We rejoice for, and continue to commit in prayers, the ministry and witness of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church. It is also gratifying to recollect the contributions of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church in the ecumenical journey of the CCA ever since its founding in 1957.”
Dr Mathews George Chunakara expressed the hope that under the esteemed leadership of the new Catholicos, the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church’s ecumenical relations with the Asian ecumenical movement will continue to be strengthened.
The new Catholicos, who served as a professor at the Orthodox Theological Seminary for several years, has authored several books. His Holiness was consecrated as a bishop in 1993.
Having served as the Secretary of the Holy Episcopal Synod, His Holiness also became the Assistant to the Catholicos and Malankara Metropolitan of the Church, and the Vice-President of the Orthodox Theological Seminary in Kottayam.
A philanthropist, scholar, and theological educator, he has been working relentlessly for the upliftment of the poor and the marginalised. He has initiated many charitable institutions over the years to help the unemployed and economically backward classes.