Trivandrum Major Archdiocese is part of the Syro Malankara Catholic Church. The Major Archeparchy of Trivandrum comprises Trivandrum, Mavelikara, Marthandam and Pathanamthitta dioceses as well as the Syro-Malankarese Apostolic Exarchate in the United States of America (suffragans). Its boundaries are civil districts of Trivandrum, Kollam, Alapzha, some parts of Pathanamthitta and Nagorkoil districts in Tamil Nadu. The eparchy of Mavelikara consists of the presbyteral districts of Adoor, Ayoor, Kattakada, Kazhakkoottam, Kilimanoor, Kottarakara, Nedumangad, Neyyatinkara, Parasala, Punaloor and Thiruvananthapuram. The archdiocesan headquarters is at Pattom in Thiruvananthapuram.
Malayalam, Tamil and English are in use in the territory.
The Syro-Malankara Catholic Church (also known as Malankara Syrian Catholic Church, Malankara Syriac Catholic Church) is an Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Holy See. The Church is one of the Saint Thomas Christian Churches centered in Kerala, India, which trace their origin to the evangelism of Saint Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century. Among the Eastern Catholic Churches, the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church is a major archepiscopal Church, headed by Major Archbishop and Catholicos Baselios Mar Cleemis, who was elected in 2007.
The liturgy of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church is of the Antiochene rite, West Syrian in character. The liturgy today is celebrated in Malayalam, Syriac, English, Tamil, and Hindi.
The Church was established in 1930 when it split from the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, an Oriental Orthodox Church, and subsequently entered into communion with the Holy See. The Malankara Church itself had emerged out of the split within the Saint Thomas Christian community of the 16th century; previously the entire community had comprised a province of the Church of the East, or the Nestorian Church, based in Persia. However, the collapse of that Church and influence from the Portuguese, who tried to bring them under the Latin rite of the Catholic Church, led to a rift in the community. Eventually, the majority entered into communion with Rome as the Eastern Catholic Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, while the rest formed the Malankara Church and aligned with the Syrian Orthodox Church. Taking only five members of his church with him, Mar Ivanios had founded the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, on Sept. 20, 1930. Pope Pius XI. through the Apostolic Constitution Christo Pastorum Principi of June 11, 1932, established the Syro-Malankara Hierarchy for the reunited community and erected the archiparchy of Trivandrum with the eparchy of Tiruvalla as its suffragan.The metropolitan eparchy of Trivandrum was established in 1932. Mar Ivanios was enthroned as its first metropolitan archbishop.
The territory is well connected with roads and railway and air. A new port in Vizhinjam is also coming up. The nearest airport, Thiruvananthapuram is about 6 kilometers away from the headquarters of archdiocese.
The city's climate is a mix of a tropical savanna climate and a monsoon climate. As a result it does not experience distinct seasons.. Thiruvananthapuram is the first city along the path of the southwest monsoon and gets its first showers in early June. The city gets heavy rainfall of around 1,700 mm per year. The dry season sets in by December. December, January and February are the coldest months while March, April and May are the hottest.
The economy of Thiruvananthapuram archdiocese is a mix of agriculture, industry and government sector. Thiruvananhtapuram being the state capital has 60 per cent of the work force in the governmental sector. But during the last 15 years, Thiruvannathapuram has been transformed into a techie capital with around 45,000 software professional working in many IT firms. The city contributes 80 percent of software exports from the state. The opening of many private television channels in the state made Thiruvananthapuram the home of several studios and related industries. India's first animation park, Kinfra Film and Video Park, is situated here.
Mavelikara was once part of the principality of Onattukara and has been a centre of religious harmony, culture and arts for several centuries. As a testament to its link to that flourishing center of Buddhist culture, Mavelikara is one of the rare places in Kerala where one can find The statue of Buddha in seated position, which is dating back to the 9th century AD.
Gonsalo Garcia was born on Feb. 5, 1556, to a Portuguese father and Indian mother of Konkani descent, at Agashi village at Bassein (now Vasai), near Mumbai city in western India. His father was a soldier stationed at Fort Bassein, a Portuguese fort. Gonsalo received his education under the Jesuits. While assisting at the Church of the Holy of Jesus at Bassein, he developed a friendship with Jesuit Father Sebastian Gonsalves, who eventually became his lifelong mentor and guide.
This Filipino layman martyr saint could be rightly called the patron of infant baptism because it was after the baptism of an infant through his instrumentality that on 2nd April 1672 Pedro was martyred along with his companion missionary Fr. Diego San Vitores who baptised the infant. This infant was of a mother who got converted to Catholicism.
Lorenzo Ruiz, also called Saint Lorenzo of Manila, is a Filipino saint venerated in the Catholic Church. A Chinese-Filipino, he became his country's protomartyr after his execution in Japan by the Tokugawa Shogunate during its persecution of Japanese Christians in the 17th century.
Andrew Kim Taegon was the first Korea-born Catholic priest ordained by the French Bishop Jean-Joseph-Jean-Baptiste Ferréol at Shanghai in 1844.
On every first Friday of the month thousands of Catholics flock to Holy Cross Church of Cherpunkal in Kerala, India to revere Infant Jesus and St. Thomas, the founder of the church. The church stands on the southern bank of Meenachil River. This fabled church, also known by its Syriac name Mar Sleeva (Holy Cross)Church, belongs to Catholic Diocese of Palai of the Eastern-rite Syro-Malabar Church.
St. Mary’s Cathedral Church in Ranchi, the capital of Jharkhand state, is the mother church in the tribal belt of eastern India, where Belgian Jesuits laid the foundation of Catholicism in 19th century. This brownish Church, dedicated to the Immaculate Conception of Virgin Mary, stands on Dr. Camil Bulcke Path and nestles between St. Xavier’s College and St. Albert Major Seminary.
Basilica of Our Lady of Graces in Sardhana is a historic church that lives the memory of love and benevolence of the sole female Roman Catholic ruler in India. Our Lady of Graces Church of Sardhana stands at Meerut district in Uttar Pradesh of northern India. Consecrated in 1822, this 200-feet long church with a high central dome over the main altar, is one of the largest churches in northern India.
Saint Thomas Cathedral Basilica at Mylapore is a monumental declaration on ancient root of Christianity in India. The church was built over the tomb of St. Thomas, the Apostle who is believed to have preached Christianity in India. The cathedral preserves 2000-year-old bones of the saint and the lance that pierced him to death. Popularly known as Santhome Church, the cathedral at Chennai (formerly Madras) in Tamil Nadu state was constructed during the Portuguese era in the 16th century. “San Thome” assumes its name from St. Thomas.
Mokama Marian shrine on the southern bank of Ganges River bears the legacy persecuted Nepali Catholics banished from their homeland to India for refusing to renounce their faith. Our Lady of Divine Grace Church at Mokama stands about 90 kilometers from Patna, the capital of eastern Indian state of Bihar. Mother Mary is popularly known as Mokama Mata (Mother of Mokama). The church was built to honor Mary in 1947.
The Cathedral of Good Shepherd in Singapore is a historic National Monument, but it also holds first-class relics of a French saint who brought Catholicism on the shores of city-state two centuries ago. Built in 1847, the Good Shepherd Cathedral is the oldest Catholic Church and mother church of all Catholic churches in Singapore.
Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica at Fort Kochi is one of the finest churches and a historic but also a landmark in Kerala state of southern India. Santa Cruz Church blends Indo-European and Gothic architectural style that draws tens of thousands of pilgrims and tourists every year. The cathedral is a great place of devotion and historic significance that survived colonial conquests and invasions to the city.
St. Anthony Cathedral at Wahakotte in Kandy is a melting of cultures and religions in Sri Lanka. Wonder worker St. Anthony of Padua is a highly respected saint among Sri Lankans of all ethnicities and faiths. Thousands visit this pilgrimage site all the year round. On the feast of St. Anthony on June 13, this national Catholic shrine draws tens of thousands of faithful from all over the country.