The daughter of a deceased octogenarian woman in Kerala had to consent to join the Orthodox Church to ensure that the St. Thomas Orthodox Church allows her Jacobite mother to be buried in their cemetery, the New Indian Express has reported.
Mini, the daughter of the late Chinnamma, was emotionally blackmailed into converting to the Orthodox faction so that her mother could receive a decent burial at the family crypt. The St. Thomas Church, which earlier belonged to the Jacobite faction, was transferred to the Orthodox faction following a Supreme Court verdict.
“My mother always told me that she should not be buried in another cemetery. She wanted to be buried in the family crypt, but now it belongs to the Orthodox faction. When I approached them, they were ready for burial only if I joined their faction,” said Mini, as per the report.
Father Joseph Malayil, the vicar of St Thomas Church, said “We are not against the burial of any faithful. She approached us for a decent burial and we did not deny it. It is a matter of humanity.” However, a source from the Jacobite side claimed that there were many instances on which the Orthodox faction had refused decent burial grounds for Christians.
Factionalism within the Christian community runs extremely high. Despite their vaulted claims, Churches in India are known to discriminate between Christians, on many occasions even on the basis of their caste.