by David W Virtue, Virtueonline:
Lay Anglican leaders from the Church of South India (CSI) have petitioned Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan of the state of Kerala not to receive the leader of the Anglican Communion Archbishop Justin Welby as a state guest when he comes to India in September, arguing that Church’s invitation will gloss over the deep corruption within the CSI.
An article in The New India Express ran with the headline, “Don’t receive Canterbury Archbishop as state guest: Church of South India to Kerala CM.”
In their petition, the “eminent personalities” said the Church’s invitation to the archbishop was aimed at covering up several issues, including and especially corruption.
“The Archbishop of Canterbury has no relevance for faithful in the state. The CSI is according him such a mammoth welcome to cover up the rot that has set in the Church and the state guest status provides a semblance of respect to the Church,” said Valson Thampu, former principal of St Stephen’s College, Delhi.
The group of laymen also mentioned in the petition that the Church was trying to cover up criminal charges against bishops through extensive media coverage generated during the visit of the Archbishop.
“CSI former moderator Bishop Daivasirvadam was remanded in Vijayawada sub-jail for 40 days between December 2018 and January 2019 in connection with embezzlement of funds to the tune of 70 crore, ($1 Billion dollars)” said Jacob Mathew, secretary, CSITA stake-holders association.