Liguori Province of Kerala, India rejoices with the whole Redemptorist family for having Bro. Luke (Dipu) Thaitharayil C.Ss.R. receiving the Order of Diaconate on May 29, 2021. Along with him, Bros. Rocky Mulavarickal C.Ss.R, Thomas Padinjarekutt C.Ss.R, Antony Puthur C.Ss.R, Joseph Vadakkepeedika C.Ss.R and Xavier Eazharayath C.Ss.R received the minor orders of Kaaroya (Lectorate) and hevpathyakhaana (Subdiaconate) from Mar Thomas Tharayil, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Changanassery. Rev. Fr. Biju Madathikunnel C.Ss.R. and Fr. Poly Kannampuzha C.Ss.R. were the concelebrants for the liturgical ceremony.
The pandemic situation forced us to celebrate it in a low key. A few confreres and a couple of lay people were present for the event.
After the celebration in the chapel, at the raising of toast, Fr. Provincial thanked the bishop for his homily and his availability to officiate at the celebration. Then we all sang vivat and congratulated the confreres. We take this opportunity to thank all the confreres who moved a step closer to their Priestly Ordination and the entire Redemptorist family for your prayerful support.
The Syro-Malabar Church, based in Kerala, India, with about 5 million faithful, more than 8,500 priests and 32,000 religious, is the second-largest Eastern Catholic Church (after the Ukrainian Church) of the 23 Eastern Catholic Churches in full communion with Rome. According to Catholic tradition, this Eastern-rite church traces its origins to the preaching of St. Thomas the Apostle on the subcontinent. For more than 25 years it was sui iuris, and therefore has the right to erect its own communities where the faithful have emigrated.
Hevpathyakhaana (Subdiaconate) is the second of two minor orders for a priestly candidate in the Syro-Malabar Church, with the Order of Kaaroya (Lector) being the first. These two minor orders begin separation from the old self into a new self conformed to the person of Jesus Christ.
Subdeacons have the right and duty to assist in liturgical celebrations according to the norms. They must guard the sacred vessels, the church portal, the lamp of the Blessed Sacrament, the order and decorum of the church, read the book of psalms and incense, and assist at the Holy Altar.
In this way, the sub-deacons participate in the life of Christ who purified and prepared the Temple to make the true sacrifice of his Passover. They are given the sacred vessels for the preparation of the sacrifice and the book of psalms. In addition to the Robe and Girdle, the subdeacons are worn with Urara, that is, the stole, around their necks.
The minor order of Kaaroya (Lectorate) is the first minor order in the Syro-Malabar Church. Those ordained lectors have the right and duty to read the Old Testament. Therefore they are given the book of the Old Testament. They are clothed with the Robe (Kotina) and the Girdle (Sunara). The Robe (Kotina) symbolises the new man, and the Girdle is the symbol of purity.
Fr. Sijo Thaliyath, Fr. Tomy KJ (Rector)
/the background information about the Syro-Malabar Church is based on various internet resources/