Indian archdiocese’s centenary eclipsed by liturgy divide – UCA News

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

Warring priests and laity keep out top hierarchy of Syro-Malabar Church from Dec. 21 Eucharistic celebrations…

The Eastern rite Syro-Malabar Church remains a divided house as the Archdiocese of Ernakulam-Angamaly launched year-long celebrations to mark its centenary.

Around 200 priests from the archdiocese concelebrated Mass led by Father Antony Narikulam, rector of the St. Mary’s Cathedral Basilica, on Dec. 21. No bishops attended it.

Father Kuriakose Mundadan, secretary of the council of priests, delivered the message of the celebrations that entail year-long events, which were unveiled at a public meeting later.

The inaugural Eucharist was held at a college close to Mount St. Thomas, the headquarters of the Church and home to its head, Major Archbishop Cardinal George Alencherry.

The archdiocese is the seat of the Major Archbishop. However, the cardinal, Archbishop Andrews Thazhath, the apostolic administrator of the archdiocese, and other prelates were conspicuous by their absence at the opening Eucharist.

Father Jose Vithayathil, the senior-most priest in the archdiocese, lit the ceremonial lamp to mark the occasion and special candles were lit across all the churches in the archdiocese.

Father Mundadan told UCA News that since Ernakulam-Angamaly was the first archdiocese of the church, its centenary also becomes the centenary of establishing the Church’s hierarchy. 

“But celebrations were restricted to the Ernakulam-Angamaly Archdiocese,” Father Mundadan told UCA News when asked about the absence of bishops.

“We did not invite the top hierarchy as they were dead against our traditional mass and we planned the inaugural mass in our traditional format,” he added.

Father Antony Vadakkekara, the spokesperson of the Syro-Malabar Church, though refused to comment…

Indian archdiocese’s centenary eclipsed by liturgy divide – UCA News

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