THE SYRO-MALANKARA CATHOLIC CHRUCH: HISTORICAL OVERVIEW Minimize
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The Second Ordinary Holy Episcopal Synod was convoked on 6-7 December 2006 and it was decided to revive the  ministerial titles of Ramban and Corepiscopo which were in vogue in the Church and to honor a few priests for their meritorious service in the Church. His Grace Most Rev. Dr. Isaac Mar Cleemis, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Tiruvalla, conferred the titles on Saturday, 13 January 2007 on three priests at St. John's Cathedral, Tiruvalla and Moran Mor Cyril Baselios Catholicos conferred these titles on ten priests on 17 January, 2007 at St. Mary's Cathedral, Pattom.

On Thursday, 18 January 2007, His Beatitude Moran Mor Cyril Baselios, the first Major Archbishop-Catholicos of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church slept in the Lord. On the same day, His Excellency Most Rev. Dr. Geevarghese Mar Divannasios, Bishop of Bathery assumed the office as the Administrator of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church and of the Major Archieparchy of Trivandrum as per CCEO c. 127. The mortal remains of His Beatitude Cyril Baselios Catholicos was entombed at St. Mary's Cathedral, Pattom on 20 January 2007.

Major Archbishop-Catholicos Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis (2007-)

In order to elect the new Major Archbishop-Catholicos, the first Holy Episcopal Synod of election of the Syro Malankara Catholic Church was convoked on 7-10 February 2007 at the Catholicate Centre, Pattom, Trivandrum. After a day of prayer and meditation, the Holy Episcopal Synod elected His Grace Most Rev. Dr. Isaac Mar Cleemis, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Tiruvalla as the new Major Archbishop-Catholicos of the Syro Malankara Catholic Church and the Major Archbishop of Trivandrum. His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI confirmed the election on 9 February and it was announced by His Excellency Most Rev. Geevarghese Mar Divannasios, the Administrator, on 10 February 2007 at St. Mary's Cathedral, Pattom, Trivandrum. This was the first Synod of Election in an oriental Catholic Church in India.

The official inauguration of the Eparchy of Mavelikara and the installation of His Excellency Most Rev. Joshua Mar Ignathios as its Bishop were held at St. Mary's Church, Punnamood, Mavelikara on 16 February 2007. The Holy Qurbono was celebrated by the newly elected Major Archbishop-Catholicos and the Installation was officiated by the Administrator of the Church His Excellency Most Rev. Dr. Geevarghese Mar Divannasios.

Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI appointed Very Rev. Dr. Chacko Aerath OIC as the Apostolic Visitor for the Syro-Malankara Catholic faithful residing in the Extra-territorial Regions of the Church within India on 7 February 2007.

Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis was enthroned as the Second Major Archbishop-Catholicos of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church and the Major Archbishop of Trivandrum on 5 March 2007 at St. Mary's Cathedral, Pattom. His installation service was officiated by Most Rev. Geevarghese Mar Divannasios, the Synodal Administrator of the Church. A large number of ecclesiastical and political dignitaries including His Eminence Cardinal Telesphore Toppo (the President of the CBCI), His Eminence Cardinal Varkey Vithayathil (Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Church) and Shri. V. S. Achuthanandan (the Chief Minister of Kerala), Official representatives of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, a large number of Bishops, Priests, Religious, lay faithful and social and political leaders participated in the installation ceremony and public meeting.

Very Rev. Dr. Cahcko Aerath OIC was ordained Bishop with the name Jacob Mar Barnabas by His Beatitude Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis Catholicos on 10 March 2007. As per the decision of the Holy Episcopal Synod and in consultation with the Apostolic Nuncio in India, New Delhi was chosen as the place of his residence and Mar Barnabas took charge of the office on 22 March 2007.

As per the decision of the Holy Episcopal Synod and in consultation with the Holy See, the Major Archbishop-Catholicos, Moran Mor His Beatitude Baselios Cleemis transferred His Excellency Most Rev. Thomas Mar Koorilos from the Eparchy of Moovattupuzha and appointed his as the Second Metropolitan Archbishop of the Archieparchy of Tiruvalla on Monday, 26 March 2007 and His Beatitude officiated the Installation Ceremony on Wednesday, 2 May 2007 at St. John's Cathedral, Tiruvalla.
His Beatitude Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis Catholicos visited the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI on 28 May 2007 at Vatican. His Beatitude was most cordially received by His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican Palace. Both the Prelates had a frank and pleasant sharing on various aspects of ecciesial life. After the private audience, His Holiness received the whole Syro-Malankara Catholic Community in Rome in Sala Clementina. His Beatitude in his address, greeted the Holy Father and expressed the loyality and affection of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church. His Holiness saluted the Major Archbishop-Catholicos and gave a message. The Special audience was concluded with an apostolic blessing from the Holy Father. The Congregation for the Oriental Churches in Rome also gave a warm reception to His Beatitude on his first official visit to the Holy See.

During the 54th Commemoration of Archbishop Mar Ivanios at St. Mary's Cathedral on Saturday, 14 July 2007, Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis, Major Archbishop-Catholicos declared Archbishop Mar Ivanios as Servant of God, accepting the petition submitted by Rev. Fr. Antony Valiyavilayil OIC, the postulator for the cause of canonization of Archbishop Mar Ivanios.

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