St. Geevarghese Mar Gregorios of Parumala

parumalathirumeni2It was on June 15, 1848 that Kochu Ipeora (Geevarghese) was born in Mulanthuruthy Kerala. His parents were Kochu Mathai and Mariam who had three sons and two daughters. After the early days of education under Malpan (teacher) Geevarghese of Chathuruthy, Kochu Ipeora was ordained as deacon on September 14, 1859; he was only ten years old at that time.

One day Malpan became seriously ill with smallpox. Deacon Geevarghese was the only one who stayed and took care of him, while all others were sent home. On the eight day Malpan died and Deacon became ill. During this time he had a vision of St. Mary in his dream, descending to console him, and exhorting him to dedicate the rest of his life to the lord. He pledged: "He would". This was a heavenly vision that enabled him to become a humble servant of God. Very soon the deacon recovered.

At the age of 18, in 1865 he was ordained as a priest. Joseph Mar Dionysios raised him to the order of monks (Ramban) in 1872. The Patriarch of Antioch consecrated four metropolitans at Paravoor Church, Kerala in December 10, 1876. The youngest among them was Geevarghese Ramban and who was named Mar Gregorios. Because of his age everybody called him "Kochu Thirumeni"(Youngest Bishop). Mar Gregorios was appointed the bishop of Niranam, Kerala. He started a monastery at Parumala, Kerala.

Mar Gregorios was a man of God, who lived not according to the way of the flesh but according to the law of god. He led a virtuous and strict life, like a monk, living on frugal diet enriched by prayer and fasting.

At Parumala Seminary he led an strict life. He observed his own special fasts and people came from far and near to seek his blessings and paternal advices. In his own words "Prayer brings truth, religious faith, honesty and respect among the people."

St. Gregorios became sick when he returned from Veeyapuram Church after blessing a marriage. Even from the beginning of his illness he knew that he was in his last days. The news of illness spread all over Malankara. Although he grew weaker day by day, his face shone brighter and brighter. It was on November 2, 1902, midnight he was ready to meet his heavenly father. He left his earthly abode and flew to eternity. In 1947, The Holy Episcopal synod canonized and proclaimed him a Saint of the Orthodox Church. There are hundreds of instances that proved his Saintliness. Thousands of people receive favors and blessings through his intercession.

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