KOCHI:The Synod of the Syro-Malabar Church that met on August 21 has decided to give sanction to the believers to cremate the dead if they really want it. The Syro-Malabar Church also made it clear that the believers, who want to cremate the dead,instead of burial, should apply for it and obtain the sanction from the respective dioceses. However, the Syro-Malabar Church Synod also instructed that the last rites to the dead should be performed strictly in accordance with the traditions and belief of the Church, before the cremation.
“The respective dioceses can give the permission to cremate the body on the basis of the request, but the traditional prayers of the Church and rites should be performed. The decision was taken by the Synod after considering various requests it received seeking permission for cremation,” said Fr Paul Thelakat, spokesperson of Syro-Malabar Synod. Fr Thelakat also said that, in European countries, the Church is giving permission to cremate the bodies.
While raising its apprehensions over the crisis in the agricultural sector, the Synod observed that the decrease in the prices of rubber, cardamom and nutmeg has affected the high-range farmers.
The Bishops who attended the Synod also held discussions with the state leaders of Infam in this regard.
“We hereby request the state government to take urgent measures to solve the ongoing crisis in the agriculture sector of Kerala, where 70 per cent of the population depends on agriculture for a livelihood. The price of agricultural crops like rubber has came down drastically from `250 a kg to Rs 120. We do hereby extend our whole support to organisations like Infarm,” a release issued by the Syro-Malabar Church Synod stated. The Synod also expressed its concern over the increase in the number of couples who are approaching the dioceses seeking divorce. “In most of the cases, the marriages are organised without conducting proper inquiry on the whereabouts and background of the couples, which later leads to differences of opinion. Hence, awareness on family values and marriage life should be given from the higher secondary school-level itself,” the Synod observed.