- Appointment of new Joint secretary
Rev. Fr Stanley Mathirappilly has replaced Rev.Fr. Shaji Jermain as new Joint Secretary, representing the Latin Church.
2. Bishops - Theologians Colloquium
Bishops - Theologians Colloquium of the year 2015 on Religious Extremism in Kerala was held on August 4th 2015 at Mount Thomas, Kakkanadu. The meeting began at 10.00 with prayer.
Bishop Most Rev. Dr. Joseph Kariyil, Secretary General, KCBC welcomed the participants. His Grace Archbishop Mar Joseph Perumthottom, Vice President of KCBC inaugurated the colloquium.
Prof. Hameed Chendamangaloor presented the first paper on the new Horizons of Religious Extremism. It was followed with a paper by Adv. Sebastian Paul, Ex MP on Religious Extremism in Kerala. And finally Dr. Tony Neelankavil has presented the paper on Christian Response to Religious Extremism.
In the afternoon, a general discussion was held on Christian response to religious extremism in the context of Kerala. In particular, the participants have expressed the urgent need of Kerala Church to strengthen and deepen our relation and friendship with all religious communities and also on the need to be vigilant on checking the extremism intruding into our society.
Rt. Rev Abraham Mar Julios, Chairman of KCBC Theology commission has presented the concluding statement of the colloquium.
Fr Mathai Kadavil OIC proposed vote of thanks to all the participants of the colloquium.
3. Data collection of Kerala Theologians
The long cherished dream of collecting data of Theologians from Kerala is progressing with the help of Dioceses and Major Superiors of Religious congregations.
4. Gathering of Religious Theologians
A gathering of religious Theologians from Kerala was conducted on Oct 8, 2015 at POC. 42 Theologians participated in the gathering. Fr Thomas Manjakunnel CMI, President of KCMS has inaugurated the gathering.
The first presentation was on Religious in the Kerala Church. Fr Francis Peraparambil OCD, Sr Grace Chembilakam SABS and Sr. Ardra SIC presented a bird’s eye view of religious in the Latin, Syro Malabar and Malankara Churches respectively. The indigenous religious communities started in Kerala beginning from 19th century were briefly presented. The discussion that followed took note of the way the Kerala Church is spiritually nourished with the help of religious and also the mission works initiated by Kerala religious throughout the world.
The second session was on Religious commitment in the changing context of contemporary Kerala Society. Fr Joy James SJ presented the theme. He has presented some of the present day concerns of Kerala society and on the need of rearticulating the Charism of each Congregation responding to the changing situations of our society.
The third session was on the Challenges in religious life. Fr Cyriac Kanichay CMI has called the attention of Theologians to the identity crisis seen in religious Congregations. In particular, he spoke of the urge of religious to in building up their assets and also of the absence of holy people in religious life; the reduction of religious, life as mere activists not only by the religious themselves but even by the Church; lack of good formation in religious communities; lack of true motivation and conviction among the religious and challenges from families … Fr. Jacob Naluparayil mainly spoke on the dire need of poverty in religious life. He spoke: the option for poor is not enough rather the Church and naturally the religious should become poor; the mother and protector of religious is poverty; Church the bride of the Christ shall not be richer than the bridegroom who was poor from birth to death; our mission must be mission for the people in BPL level rather than for people of APL level; do justice to poor and to the nature … Sr Maria Anto CMC has mainly spoken on the religiosity of religious. She asked how much we have become religious in our religious life? Are we consciously living our religious life? Are we loyal to Christ and to His Gospels or something in the world?
It was followed with a general discussion on the need to continue the gathering of Religious Theologians. The meeting has unanimously proposed to continue meeting of Religious Theologians in view of refreshing Religious life in the context of changing society. The meeting observed that coming of Theologians from different Congregations will strengthen the Religious. To this end the meeting has appointed a Committee to work on the foundation of a gathering of religious theologians. The following members were appointed as ad-hoc Committee to formulate the objectives and guidelines for the gathering:
Fr .Jacob Naluparayil (Convenor)
Sr. Udaya CHF
Sr. Maria Anot CMC
Sr. Sucy CTC
Sr. Ardra SIC
F.r Paulachan CMI
Fr. Mathai Kadavil OIC
5. Gathering of Kerala Theologians
A gathering of Kerala theologians was scheduled to Nov 19th at POC Ernakulam. The gathering will address the issue of theologizing in the socio cultural context of Kerala.
6. Different Sects in Kerala Church
Different ‘sects’ started emerging in the context of Post-charismatic renewal in Kerala Church. KCBC had given number of directives on how to handle the new movements. The church also has intervened in the case of some particular ‘sects’ which have deviated from the basic tenets of Christian doctrines. Emperor Immanuel is one such sect which is prohibited recently. Now we are engaged in bringing back many of its adherents to the Church.
Spirit in Jesus, another revival movement existing in the Church for the last 25 years, started showing deviation from the teaching of the Church in recent times. Their emphasis on Marian devotion, Eucharistic adoration etc., have attracted many of the Christian devotees. At the same time, their interpretation of Holy Scriptures, certain teachings on Mariology, teachings on departed soul, enculturation etc., are creating tension among the faithful. Few years of dialogue in view of correcting them from their wrong teachings could not bring any positive result. Hence KCBC started instructing the faithful on the false teachings of Spirit in Jesus.
Fr Mathai Kadavil OIC
Secretary, Theology Commission