Objectives and Operations
The Malankara Catholic Church rightly claims for its origin to the Apostle Thomas. He is the one who exclaimed” (Jn. 20:28) my Lord and my God” after seeing the Risen Lord and testified to us the pride of his faith in his Master, so that we “who do believe but have not seen” (Jn. 20: 29) also can testify to our faith in the person of Jesus the Christ. It is an invitation for us to see the person of Jesus in one another and very particularly in the poor children of God, our sisters and brothers. Those of us who are poor spiritually (not poor in spirit) be touched by the belief of our father in faith, Mar Thoma and be fortified in the Spirit as the children of God. This coming together of the children of God is Church, hence the necessity to encourage everyone to “grow as church”. Those of us who are economically poor are to be helped to lift themselves up through hard work and dedication. This is the prototype of the church we see in the Acts of the Apostles 6: 1-7. This is the vocation to serve at the ‘table of the Word’ and serve bread at the ‘eating table’. Moderate food for the spirit, essential and balanced food for the body is necessary. Thus God’s own people live by the Word of God and with bread earned out of their own sweat. Thus we try to enrich ourselves by reflecting on the magnitude of our being the children of God and at the same time the people of God. Hence we try to cherish our vocation to grow as church, by calling on Jesus the Christ “my God and my Lord”, as did the Apostle Thomas in his encounter with the risen Lord. If we are able to encounter the same Christ in our sisters and brothers whenever we meet with them, let’s be sure that we are on the right track.
SMCC UAE is a coming together of the Malankara Catholics in the United Arab Emirates. Malankara Catholics began get together ever since the first members felt the thrust for their dear church as soon as they stepped on to the sands of the land of Arabia. Incidentally, some fact finding investigation into this aspect would be enterprising and valuable history for the community and the Church. Sporadic visits by traveling clergymen and some occasional, spontaneous, and sprit filled gatherings have occurred ever since the Malankara enthusiasm erupted in this land due to the spiritual insight of our forerunners and, it is to be acknowledged that they have paid ‘dearly’ for their involvement in this regard. However it began to function as an ecclesial community (liturgical church community) in 2002, after various discussions between the Major Archbishop-Catholicos of the Malankara Catholic church and the Vicar Apostolic of the Vicariate of Arabia, and ensuing deliberations.
As a result of the aforesaid deliberations, there is a priest from the Malankara Catholic Church who is the chaplain to look after the spiritual needs and other necessary requirements of the community from the perspective of Church. The chaplain is appointed by the Vicar Apostolic of the Apostolic Vicariate of Arabia in accordance to the proposal and recommendation of the Malankara Major Archbishop-Catholicos.
There are committee for each community and a central committee drawn up from all communities. Committee is essentially communitarian (having common involvement and reference as church), necessarily fraternal (children of God, people of God), and consultative in its nature. Occasional meetings discuss regular business of the communities in particular and also pertinent general themes, while central one will take care of the common business and annual agenda. The chaplain draws up final decision after sufficient and detailed discussion and consultation within and outside of the committee. Because of the very nature of the committee all the more we have to take great care that our discussions are not diverted to a political or pragmatic nature.