Staff Reporter

Masses and processions pass off peacefully

KOCHI: Celebrations on the feast of Paulose Mar Athanasius ended at Thrikkunnathu, near Aluva, on Thursday with the Orthodox and Jacobite factions of the Malankara Church celebrating the holy Eucharist at separate locations and holding processions.

While Catholicos of the East Baselius Mar Thoma Didymus I led the holy Eucharist and the procession for the Orthodox faction, Baselius Thomas I led the celebrations for the Jacobite group.

The celebrations passed off peacefully with adequate security. The police said there were no untoward incidents during the celebrations, the run up to which was marked by both the groups making strident claims over the disputed seminary and the church.

Catholicos Baselius Mar Thoma Didymus I declared Yoohanon Mar Militius, Metropolitan of the Diocese of Thrissur as the Auxiliary Bishop of Angamaly Diocese, a spokesman of the Orthodox faction said here on Thursday.

Thomas Mar Athanasius, Metropolitan of Kandanad East diocese and Zachariahs Mar Antonios, Metropolitan of Kochi, were among the celebrants for the Orthodox group.

On Wednesday, timely intervention by the police prevented celebrations turning into fisticuffs as the Jacobite faction, led by its clergy, tried to offer prayers at the tombs of the Fathers of the Church.