Life History

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 Malecuriz Dayro

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Malecuriz  St.George  Dayro

Mortal remains of Catholicos Aboon Mor Baselios Paulose II is interred in the monastery

Syriac Orthodox Church

 Malankara Church

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The new  Dayro complex under construction  (Source: Photograph, May 1, 2010)

 

Introduction:

The Malecuriz St.George Dayro (monastery) is situated on a panoramic hill top at a short distance from Puthencuriz, a small township about 25 km due east of Kochi and 35km from the Cochin international airport. The English equivalent of its name 'Malecuriz' is 'Holy Cross Monastery on the Hill'.  The monastery is administered through the delegates of Moran Mor Ignatius Patriarch.  The Patriarchal Centre at Puthencuriz which is the  headquarters of the Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church in India and the central offices of the Sunday School Association (M.J.S.S.A) and Morth Mariam Samajam are all situated nearby. 

The main Altar of the chapel at the Malecuriz Dayro is consecrated in the sacred name of St.George where the saint's Holy relic is installed. The Holy relics of Mor Kaumo, St.Kuriakose, Patriarch Moran Mor Ignatius Elias III, St.Gregorios Geevarghese (Parumala Kochu Thirumeni) and St. Osthatheos Saleeba have also been installed in this Dayro. To crown these all H.B Mor Baselios Paulose II, the Catholicose of the East was laid to rest here as per the will and desire of His Beatitude. Mor Baselios Bava was a true loyal servant and faithful soldier of the Holy Apostolic Church. He lives in the hearts of all people for his simplicity and wholehearted love and affection.  Bava Thirumeni provided courage, inspiration and spiritual guidance in the time of crisis.  He is known as the “Beacon Towers” of the Church.  Now Malecuriz has become a centre of pilgrimage for the believers in India.  Many of the pilgrims who visit here, stay in the premises and pray in this holy place on all occasions, especially during the lent season.  Pilgrimage by foot takes place to the Holy tombs as well as to the sepulcher of His Beatitude Mor Baselios Paulose II on the annual celebrations of the blessed memory of His Beatitude on Aug 31st and Sep 1st every year.

Inside view of the old Dayro church

The site of the monastery and the surrounding areas were mere forests a hundred years ago, owned by the relatives of late lamented Mor Geevarghese Gregorios Metropolitan, endearingly known as Parumala Kochu Thirumeni. Soon after his death in 1902, a small plot on the hill top was cleared of wild bushes and a cross was raised there, in accordance with the wishes of the late metropolitan, expressed during one of his visits to the neighboring churches. Also a tooth of the saint removed on account of decay and preserved by his disciples was placed in a small chest and deposited there. People from the surrounding places used to climb up the hill and seek the intercession of the saint at the Cross and they had experienced abundant divine help. Before long, in 1923, a vast stretch of land, about 15 acres, was gifted by the owners (Late Mr.Kuriakose Valiyel) of the property to the Holy See of Antioch; Metropolitan St. Osthatheos Sleeba of blessed memory who was the Apostolic delegate of the Holy See in India at that time, received it. A small dayro and church in the name of St.George were built here. Mor Osthatheos Bava who faithfully served the flock in India for nearly two and a half decades used to stay here for long periods. Till recent years it remained as a training centre for the clergy of the Syrian Orthodox Church in India. 

In the following years, late Rambans Very.Rev.Geevarghese Kochuparambil and Very.Rev.Skariah Thukalan stayed here for many years and during that period the monastery and the church were extended and enlarged. In 1948 V.Rev.Kadavil Paul Ramban (later Metropolitan Kadavil Paulose Mor Athanasius Jr. of the Church Missionary movement) became the 'Reesh Dayro' and under his care and supervision further extension work was carried out. Late lamented Catholicose Mor Baselios Paulose II, after consecration as Metropolitan (Mor Philoxenos) for the Kandanad diocese, established offices here temporarily in 1953. The present Catholicos Aboon Mor Baselios Thomas I was initiated to Episcopal orders by the late Bava from this dayro.

 

St. George's Chapel (before reconstruction started), Residence of Metropolitan and View to the South-West
Source: SOR Web Site & Photos taken on Jan 2004

 

Sacred Relics in the Monastery

Besides the sacred tomb of Catholicos Mor Baselios Paulose II of the blessed memory who was the metropolitan of the Dayro for more than 4 decades, the relics of several saints have been interred here and are piously venerated by the faithful in great measure. These relics are:

1. Mor Geevarghese Sahado (St.George) - the saint renowned throughout the world as the crown of Christian martyrs.

2. Mor Kaumo - known as an earthly angel who was a Stylite (monk mediating on a pillar in a standing osture).

3. Mor Kuriakose Sahado - Infant martyr of unmatched glory who received martyrdom at the very tender age of three along with his mother Morth Yulithy.

4. Parumala Kochu Thirumeni - The saint of Parumala who was consecrated metropolitan at the young age of 28 and who saved the Church in Malankara from the reformers at the end of the last century.

5. Moran Mor Ignatius Elias III - Holy Father who sacrificed himself to bring peace in the Church in Malankara; called to the heavenly abode in 1932 while visiting his flock in Malankara and entombed at Mor Ignatius Dayro at Majanikkara.

6. Mor Osthatheos Sleeba - Apostolic delegate of the Patriarch of Antioch in India during the turbulent period in the Church during the first quarter of the last century who suffered many indignities and insults from a dissident group - entombed in the St.Mary's Simhasana church at Arthat, Kunnamkulam.

In addition to the relics of these saints, the tombs of the pious Rambans mentioned above and Rev.Abraham Cheruvallil Kassiso who all served the church and monastery faithfully for extended periods, are revered treasures of the monastery. In the matter of richness of relics of saints, the Dayro stands out prominently.

The important annual feasts observed here are: St.George's Day on May 5 and 6, St.Gregorios day on Nov 1 and 2 and the Dhukrono of Mor Baselios Paulose II on August 31 and September 1. Apart from the annual feasts, the Holy Eucharist is celebrated here on Saturdays, Sundays and on all sacred feats of the Holy Church: pilgrims flock even from far off places to the church with fervent prayers and offerings on these days.

 

Aboon Mor Baselios Paulose II
Former Catholicos of the East & Malankara Metropolitan

Seminary

It may be noted that from 1955 to 1990 the Ecclesiastical Seminary was functioning here under the strict supervision and guidance of devoted and efficient Malpan's who were very proficient in the liturgy, ethos, history et al of our ancient Church. In February 1990 the Seminary was shifted from here to the new spacious M.S.O.T Seminary at Udayagiri, Vettikkal, about 10 km. from here.

 

Metropolitan in charge and the Residents of the Monastery

H.E. Mor Julius Kuriakose, the former secretary to His Holiness the Patriarch and the senior Metropolitan of the Patriarchal institutions in India, is the Metropolitan of the Dayro and administrator of the church and properties, succeeding H.E. Benyamin Joseph Mor Osthatheos. Metropolitan H.G. Kuriakose Mor Dioscoros (previously Ramban Kurien John) who is the Abbot of the Dayro under Mor Julius, is residing here since July 1999. His Grace Mor Dioscoros was ordained Metropolitan in December 2002. Very Rev.Geevarghese Eralil Ramban (Geevarghese Mor Athanasius Metropolitan) was the abbot from 1997 to 1999. Many young novices and volunteers stay here from time to time, assisting in the routine works along with the Sunday School teachers and students.  Deacon Joseph who is a scholar in theology as well as in Syriac is a permanent monastic here.  Rev. Abraham Palathinkal who was the other resident of the dayro passed away a few years before.

(Deacon Joseph, the resident monk of the Malecuriz Dayro:  While working in the P&T Department at Thiruvanathapuram, Joseph had an irrepressible inner call to devote his life for the Lord's glory. Restless in spirit he wrote about it to Mor Philoxenos Paulose Metropolitan (Catholicose Paulose II) of blessed memory. After a series of correspondence and discussions he resigned his job in November 1967 and came to the Metropolitan's Aramana in Muvattupuzha marking the beginning of his dayro life. In 1976 he moved to the Malecuriz Dayro as per the express desire of the Catholicos where he served also as teacher in the seminary till it was shifted to Udayagiri. Since he entered the portals of the monastery he has never gone out of its bounds except in the church processions during holy feats. He is now 70 years in age and is ever involved in praying, teaching, preaching or giving spiritual counsel.)

 

The sacred relics of St. Ignatius Elias III (left),  St. Gregorios (middle) & 

 St. Osthatheos Sleeba (right)

The Holy Qabar of His Beatitude Aboon Mor Baselios Paulose II,

the Catholicos of the East

 

The proposed Dayro building

With the considerable increase in number of devotees attending the Holy Services at the dayro church in the last few years, it become necessary to extend the church building.  A proposal to renovate the dayro was put forward before the Patriarch. His Holiness approved it and graciously blessed the project.  In the master plan, the tomb of late lamented Catholicose as well as the other tombs falls within the walls of the proposed dayro complex.

 

Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka I Iwas, Patriarch of Antioch laying down the corner stone for the Malecuriz Dayro Church on Friday  7th April, 2000

The foundation stone to reconstruct the church and monastery and also a retirement home for old priests was blessed and laid on Friday 7th April 2000 by Moran Ignatius Zakka I Iywas the Prince Patriarch of Antioch and all the East, during the second pontifical visit of the Holy Father to India. The construction work was commenced on September 14, 2000, the Feast of the Holy Cross of our Lord. The proposed church is two storied with a nave of 22.00 m x 9.90 m, hykla (the interim space between the Altar & Nave) is 9.90 x 5.02 m, Mondom 8.64 x 7.28 m, 2,40  m wide verandah all round, Nine Altar tables (7nos in ground floor & 2 nos at the balcony floor level), balcony 9.90 x 5.36  & 2,40 m wide on sides.  The Master plan consists of rooms for the Bishops, Priests and pilgrims, Patriarchal suite for His Holiness, H.B the Catholicose & the delegates, library & archives, book shop, multipurpose hall, banquet hall, dining hall, dormitories for pilgrims, training centre for Syriac language & Church history.  It is also proposed to have 15 family cottages on the western slopping terrene.  It covers a total area of 35,000 sq.ft.

Dayro Building is proposed to be in four floors including the cellar floor.  A viewing gallery is also provided in the upper most floor (roof level).  This whole project is designed as a mixture of Kerala and Christian Architecture. The civil works of the church is already started and is in the progress.  A substantial amount of resources is required for the successful completion of this project. The wholehearted and prayerful participation of all is solicited for the completion of the project.  

Reesh Dayro & Managing Trustee,

(Dayroyo Kuriakose Mor Dioscoros Metropolitan)

Malecuriz Dayro,

Vadayampady P.O.  Puthencuriz Via,

Ernakulam Dist.,

Kerala – 682 308

INDIA. 

 

Phone :  +91 – 484 – 761 661

Fax      :  +91 – 484 – 762 661

 

"Praise the Lord God and Saviour Jesus Christ for all His abundant

and unspeakable grace on us all always". Amen.

 

 

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