KOCHI: Bethel Suloko Church, Perumbavoor, witnessed simmering tension for the second day in a row after both the Jacobite and the Orthodox factions refused to back off from the Church premises on Sunday. When the Orthodox faction tried to enter the Church on Saturday morning for conducting the holy mass, the Jacobites prevented their entry by locking themselves up inside the Church. The Orthodox faction, however, occupied the Church portico in retaliation and continued to remain there even as the Jacobites, locked inside, celebrated holy mass twice on Sunday morning.
“Since the Supreme Court ruling was interpreted in favour of us, we wanted to enter the Church for morning prayers. But we were stoutly blocked by the Jacobite faction. We have been sitting here on the Church premises from Saturday morning,” said Orthodox Church spokesperson Fr John Abraham Konat. The Jacobite faction maintained they are the rightful custodians of the Church and the status quo permitting the Orthodox faction to conduct mass every week had been formalised for a quite a while and needed to be honoured.
In view of the tense situation in the Church, the Additional District Magistrate had called for a meeting on Sunday afternoon, which yielded no results.
‘We will boycott election’
Metropolitan of Thumpamon diocese Yuhanon Mar Milithios said following the aversion of the state government towards the Jacobite Church, they will be boycotting the forthcoming election. “During the holy Lent, the state government’s move to close the Kattachira Church was uncalled for. They are showing their aversion and therefore the diocese of Kollam, Niranam and Thumpamon will be boycotting the election this year,” said Mar Milithios.