Home Catholic Church & Asia Indian archdiocese close to snap ties with Vatican

Indian archdiocese close to snap ties with Vatican

The people said they would not allow Archbishop Andrews Thazhath, the apostolic administrator, to enter any archdiocesan institution

The decades-long liturgical dispute in an Eastern rite archdiocese in India has reached an “explosive stage” with priests and faithful launching an indefinite protest action against their apostolic administrator.

More than 500,000 Catholics of the Archdiocese of Ernakulam-Angamaly along with 460 priests launched on November 21 the protest action, demanding a “liturgy variant” status to their traditional Mass and rejecting the “Synod Mass.

The protesters camped inside the Archbishop’s House in Kochi, the commercial capital of the southern Indian state of Kerala where the Syro-Malabar Church is based.

A statement issued on the same day said the faithful would not allow Archbishop Andrews Thazhath, the apostolic administrator, to enter any archdiocesan institution.

“Our people including priests will not move out from the Archbishop’s House until our demands are recognized,” said Riju Kanjookaran, the spokesperson of the Archdiocesan Movement for Transparency (AMT).

A protester who preferred anonymity told Matters India that their archdiocese is likely to declare it as an independent Church.

“We have been pleading to the Vatican and the Synod of Syro-Malabar Church for justice but both of them are adamant in their egos rather than listening to us. How long can we continue like this? There should be an end either in or out,” he said.

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The protest action against Archbishop Thazhath took a dramatic turn when he instructed the St Mary’s Cathedral Basilica parish priest to make arrangements for the apostolic administrator to celebrate Mass on November 27 as approved by the bishops’ synod to bring uniformity in celebrating the liturgy.

The apostolic administrator has also directed the rector of the archdiocese’s Sacred Heart Minor Seminary to begin celebrating the synod-approved Mass.

Read the full story on Matters India

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