Do you use Palm Oil? : Lighter Moments with Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II of Antioch





Ajesh T Philip (OCP Delegate of Indian Sub-Continent)
OCP News Service – February 2015

Pics by Shijo Mathew ( Focalize Photography)

Also Read : OCP Delegation holds historic meeting with Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II at Puthenkurish

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The Orthodoxy Cognate PAGE (Society) delegation had fun-filled moments with His Holiness Ignatius Aphrem II – Patriarch of Antioch and All East on 7th February 2015 at Puthenkurizhu- headquarters of the Syriac Orthodox Church in India. The delegation met the Patriarch on the first day of his arrival to Malankara. The meeting was historic in all manners.

Abune, your picture is in the book
The Patriarch wholeheartedly welcomed OCP Delegation with a loving smile. The primate was so excited to receive the rare pan-orthodox book titled ‘Collected Writings on Orthodox Christianity’. Holding the book in his hands, he read out thirty chapter contents. The Patriarch called the OCP Secretary George Alexander by his name and congratulated him for the publication as well. He invited the attention Metropolitan Mor Thimotheos Matta Al Kohury who was sitting on a sofa nearby and showed his picture in the book (Metropolitan Matta Al Kohury has contributed in the book – Chapter titled ‘Letters from Syria’). The Patriarch said, “Abune your picture is in the book”.

The delegation also presented the Patriarch with the first Indian icon of St Peter and St Thomas and with a very special gift that which depicts the anniversary of the three important events of 2015- (Seyfo- Addis Abba Conference-Eastern-Oriental Orthodox Joint Commission). The Patriarch read the details on the gift and enquired about the origin of the icon.

Do you use Palm Oil?
A couple of people approached the Patriarch for pictures in between. Before posing for the pics, the Patriarch told OCP Secretary, “George I am with you”. Later, a traditional Kerala Nilavilakku ( cross mounted type) was presented to the Patriarch which he received with a broad smile. The Patriarch held the lamp in his hands and took a look at the beautiful gift. His Holiness said, “Let the light spread everywhere”. Primate commented, “Where are the oil and light?” The OCP Chairman K C Jacob responded that the oil and light should come from the Church of Antioch. “So do you use Palm oil to light the lamp?’ asked the Patriarch. Secretary George replied, “Your Holiness we use coconut oil.”

His Holiness posed for a group photo with the OCP Delegation. The Patriarch pointed at the OCP Photographer and said, “Shijo is their photographer, let him take beautiful pictures”. The brotherly encounter was full of with humor, love, smile and laughter.

OCP News Service

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