Metropolitan of Knanaya archdiocese of Syrian Orthodox Church suspended

The suspension order said Kuriakose's actions amounted to "challenging the authority of the Holy Throne of Antioch".


Published May 18, 2024 | 2:56 PMUpdatedMay 18, 2024 | 2:56 PM

Knanaya Metropolitan Mor Severios Koriakose

The Metropolitan of the Knanaya archdiocese of the Malankara Syrian Orthodox Church has been suspended and relieved of all his powers and responsibilities by the Patriarch of Antioch Ignatius Aphrem II.

In an official communication conveying the suspension to Mor Severios Kuriakose, who was the Metropolitan and ‘Samudaya’ Metropolitan of the Knanaya archdiocese, the Patriarch said that he was “not setting a good example in the clergy and believers” as mandated in the Constitution of the Syrian Orthodox Church of Antioch.

The action was taken on Friday, 17 May, following a hearing on the same day on the charges against Kuriakose of alleged lack of concern and action from his side on the issue of Indian Orthodox priests conducting ‘Passion Week’ services in Knanaya parishes in USA.

‘Explanation not satisfactory’

The Patriarch said the explanations given by Kuriakose were not satisfactory.

“We are unconvinced about your explanation regarding the reception given to the Catholicos of the Indian Orthodox Church,” the Patriarch said in the communication.

It also said that Kuriakose’s actions amounted to “challenging the authority of the Holy Throne of Antioch”.

It also reminded him that his titles of Archbishop and Chief Metropolitan of the Knanaya Archdiocese of India were taken back “because you were found unworthy of it”.

“The present charges against you show that you did not introspect and mend your ways even after that,” it further said.

“Hence, with a heavy heart, we are constrained to hereby suspend you. You are relieved of all your powers and responsibilities as a Metropolitan and the ‘Samudaya Metropolitan’ of our Knanaya Archdiocese during the period of suspension.

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The order

“You are restrained from all episcopal and priestly functions and duties until further proceedings and order from us. We are praying for your repentance after thorough reflection and remorse,” the order dated 17 May said.

The Patriarch’s order further said that the suspension of Kuriakose will be reconsidered and reviewed if the church was convinced of his repentance.

Following the decision, supporters of Kuriakose in the managing committee protested in front of the Knanaya Church headquarters at Chingavanam in Kottayam.

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