|Infant Jesus Church (CMI)|
An open letter from the Parishioners
of Infant Jesus Church, Thalore,the controversial parish,
Thrissur diocese, Kerala, India.
PARISHIONERS RIGHTS PROTECTION COUNCIL,
Date: 29/05/2014 Mrs. Baby George (Convener)
The Infant Jesus Parish, Thalore was started in 1977 by the Archbishop Joseph Kundukulam. According to the Canonical Agreement with the religious community the parish administration was entrusted to the Infant Jesus Monastery, and the prior of the Monastery was appointed as Vicar, and the Monastery church was elevated to the status of parish church. This parish was declared as a fully Canonical and permanent parish.
The parish was run very successfully for 33 years under the leadership of religious priests of the Monastery, as one of the best parishes in the Archdiocese. But the present Archbishop Andrews Thazhath separated the parish from the Monastery without consulting the parishioners nor the Vicar and appointed a diocesan priests as its Vicar on October 31, 2009. Since the declaration was fully autocratic and against the existing Canon laws and the laws of the Syro Malabar Church Kerala, a group of parishioners started agitation against the action of the Archbishop. The agitation still continues severely.
Taking into account the worse situation the Major Archbishop in consultation with the Bishop Synod gave a proposal to bifurcate the parish of 1200 families in accordance to the will of the parishioners. But the Archbishop did not implement the proposal of the Major Archbishop. Again the congregation for the Eastern Churches, Roam, gave a similar proposal to the Archbishop. But the Archbishop neglected it, and made a counter proposal in consultation with the Nuncio, Delhi and imposed it in the parish. The counter proposal was to reduce the liturgical services in the Monastery church. The Archbishop gave strict order to the prior of the Monastery to reduce the two daily Masses into one on ordinary days and similarly four Holy Masses into one Holy Mass on Sundays also. This order in fact disregards the value of Sunday Masses as it is narrated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (No. 2180). Because of this unchristian action of the Arch bishop the parishioners are in great spiritual problem. Due to great inconvenience to attend the Holy Mass, a good number of Catholics do not attend Holy Masses on Sundays. This is an evidence that the Archbishop has no concern and interest for the spiritual welfare of the Faithful. So we request the church authority and the people of goodwill to interfere in this tragic problem and to take immediate action to establish justice and peace to the Faithful at Thalore.