CHRISTIAN NEWS BIWEEKLY PUBLICATION FOR KERALA MALAYALEE CHRISTIANS FROM INDIA AROUND THE WORLD
January 1, 2002 ARCHIVE
Vol:2 Issue:1

'IN THE BEGINNING GOD'

  By Dr. Rajan Mathew Mannadi

Bible starts with phrase 'In the beginning God'. This is the reference of creation of the world. God created everything out of nothing. God created Earth, Sky, Sea, Light, Darkness, all living creatures and finally man with word from his own mouth. This creative act on the part of God was absolutely free, and for infinitely wise reasons. The cause of all things exists only in the will of God. The work of creation is attributed:

1. To the Godhead: The fact that he is the Creator distinguishes Jehovah as the true God. The one great end in the work of creation is the manifestation of the glory of the Creator. (Roman 1:20) 'For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, [even] his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:'
2. To the Father: (1 Corinthians 8:6) 'But to us [there is but] one God, the Father, of whom [are] all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom [are] all things, and we by him.'
3. To the Son: (John 1:3) 'All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.' (Colossians 1:16) 'For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether [they be] thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him'
4. To the Holy Spirit: (Job 26:13) 'By his spirit he hath garnished the heavens; his hand hath formed the crooked serpent.'
God's works, equally with God's word, are a revelation from him.

If we start thinking of the two extremes of of the 'Time' and 'Space' we reach nowhere and we stop thinking. For example we see the sky and know to some extent about Universe. Let us start thinking what is beyond that we see or know, Science explains of Galaxies and Cloud of Stars. ....Beyond that what?.... OK. Further beyond that what?...Science and our brain stop working at a particular limit. Similarly start thinking of the 'Time'. We may have history, derivations, Scientific inferences for certain extremes of the age. Let us think what was before that?... Further before that?... Further before?... Here also Science and our brain stop working at a limit. As these 'Limits' of 'Time' and 'Space' beyond our human sense, Let us stop thinking about that.

This is only a part of the story ie. Universe and Human Being. As this small part itself is beyond our brain, is there any stand to think of the Origin of 'God'? No. But Bible got answer for both. Bible is a wonderful entity. I deliberately used the word 'entity'. Bible is not a mere Book, History or preachings; but it is a live 'entity'. Done! Bible got the answer. ' In the begining there was Word, Word was with God, Word was God' . If we try to analyse this sentence, is it bit confusing ? It talks about the begining of something , at same time it tells something was existing in the beginning itself. Is it mysterious ? No. Bible gives the final answer.

 

I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty. ' (Rev 1:18) This is a final word. Living Word of God who does not have a beginning or end. So take it granted blindly that God is the beginning and end of everything. We were born from God and will end our life in God. So it is only a small span of time in between Alpha and Omega , that we live in this world. All the religion teach this theory. In Hindu Religion in Gyaan Vigyaan Yoga of Bhagaval Geetha it teaches:  

'aham sarvasya prabhavo mattah sarvam pravartate
ahama kritsanasya jagatah prabhavaa pralyas-tathaa'
 

which means 'I am the source of all creation and every thing in the world moves because of Me and into Me again it disappears.'  

Let me ask a question to the agnostics who teach that there is no God existing. Do this Universe, Super Entity and all what is visible and invisible, and all beyond our thoughts and brain got created by nobody? Is it came out spontaneously? Hey fool !! Everything got a creator and this unimaginable entity can not be done without a creator. This may be beyond your brain and imagination . Be within your limit and do not conclude on things beyond your limitations.  

But during this small span of life man got the freedom and freewill to choose our own ways and deeds. Our life span so it becomes a subset of the Universe and further subset of the Super Entity 'God'.  

We are in the beginning of new Year 2002. Once we see the creation it started 'In the beginning God' and we see in the end 'God saw that [it was] good. ' . This is the point I need to stress , Whatever we start with ' In the beginning God' it always end to see that it comes out as 'Good'. We all know, during our childhood our parents do not allow us to take Pen or Pencil till the age of 4/5. When we are grown to that age, a date will be fixed for the beginning of 'Vidya'. Our first Guru catches our hand and writes in the sand 'Hari' which means God. Traditionally our parents wanted to start our education with 'In the beginning God'. Do we keep this tradition and teaching from our parents in our life to start everything in the walk of our life with 'In the beginning God'?  

During this beginning of the year let us make a decision that we start everything in 'God' and dedicate our self to God.  

I wish you all a very happy 2002  

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THE  THE THREE CHARISMAS  

By FR.Dr.M.C.Cherian
( General Secretary, MGOCSM, Indian Orthodox Church )

Most of our conference centers are like tourist centers.
"How was the conference?" most of us ask.
"Comfortable stay and good food." Here comes the reply.
Physical comforts are the decisive factors of the success of the conference as many of us think.
Sometimes one more comment., "such a good gathering."
Does this make a conference successful?
One of the recent studies shows that the percentage of fasting , prayer and alms giving is decreasing among the Indian Orthodox Christians in United States: In one hand we are spiritually decreasing: On the other hand we are becoming more worldly, like tourists. Is there any solution for these spiritually immune viruses? The only remedy is the use of three charismas.

The 20th century is known as the " Charismatic age". The Greek word Charisma means gift. Actually the word 'Charismatic' is a wrong usage. Nowadays the word is coined for the experience of Charisma. Only a few of the New Testament gifts are seen in this century, then, why do we call this age as a Charismatic one?

Hebrew 1:1-2 says , "God who at various times in various ways spoke in time past to our fathers by the prophets , has in these last days spoken to us by His son ...." From the above verse we can see the Old Testament period is partially a period of gifts and the New Testament period is fully a period of gifts. That means New Testament period is an age of Charisma. A. D is the age of Charisma( not only the 20th century.)

Another word 'Pentecost' is also used for the experience of Charisma, because on Pentecost the Church received the greatest gift Holy Spirit. Pentecostal experience is a new one. It has no relations to the so called Pentecostals. There are three stages for this Pentecostal experience : pre-Pentecostal experience, Pentecostal experience and post Pentecostal experience. Gathering together is the experience of pre-Pentecost ( Acts 1 :14, 2:1 ), praying together is the experience of Pentecost (Acts 1:14, 2:1, 4:31). Sharing together is the experience of post Pentecost (Acts. 2:44-45 )

In the Holy Qurbana, we could see the these three stages of Pentecost. Gathering together wheat and making one bread , praying together and transforming the bread as the body of Christ and sharing together the body and blood. In another sense we are the wheat of the Holy Qurbana. On Sundays we are gathering together as one body and praying together. After the divine liturgy we are sharing our Eucharistic experience to the world, by our witnessing , caring and helping fashion. We are collecting the wheat or preparing the for the Holy Qurbana is known as the liturgy before the liturgy. Our sharing experience is known as the liturgy after the liturgy.

The Greek word for Holy Qurbana is Eucharist , which means thanks giving. The word Eucharist includes four other Greek words. The words are Chara , Charis, Charisma and Euche. Chara means Joy. Charis means Grace , Charisma means gift and Euche means prayer or vows before prayer. On the basis of these words Holy Qurbana is joy, grace , gift and prayer. It is really a great gift because it is the Charisma of the son. The Eucharistic experience is a Charisma through joy, grace , gift and prayer. 

Jesus Christ is the gift from God. (Jn. 3:16 ) That means Jesus Christ is the Charisma. Holy Spirit is also the gift from God. There for , Holy Spirit is also a Charisma. The gift of Holy Spirit is known as the gift of gifts.

The early Church was a Church of Charisma. The three great gifts in the sermon on the mount are alms giving, prayer and fasting. ( Mtt. 6: 1-18 ) Jesus incorporated these three gifts in this sermon. Jesus is known as a good teacher because He practiced what He preached. He was a man of prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Prayer , fasting and almsgiving are the three stages of Pentecostal experience. It is also the three stages of our Holy Qurbana . Unfortunately in these days the faithful of the Church failed to keep up or maintain these three gifts. Fasting and almsgiving are the two side of prayer. In other words these are the two wings of prayer. In Mtt. 6:1-18 prayer is protected by almsgiving and fasting. Fasting will enlighten our mind, strengthen our spirit, control our emotions and tame our passions. It will help us to come together. God is the giver and the one to give. God is also a God of giving and forgiving. The prayer transforms us and we become givers and forgivers. The one who prays is known as Prayer. Thus we become prayers. The only way to express our prayer is through prayer and forgiving, that is almsgiving. There are material and spiritual almsgiving. Without fasting the prayer is incomplete. Without almsgiving the prayer is crippled .

IT IS OUR DUTY TO TRANSFORM OUR TOURIST CONFERENCES TO CHARISMATIC OR PENTECOSTAL OR EUCHARISTIC EXPERIENCES .

At the same time of the preparation of the conferences , fast and pray at least one day for the success of the conference and the edification of the community. The theme of the conference is not the decisive factor of the success of the conference.

Now a days we plan to attract the people by advertising gimmicks . We consider only the quantity and not quality. In the life of our Lord Jesus there was no much publicity. Express our humility and humbleness through our life. Be the leaders as models to the flocks. If the conference is God's plan , join with Him for success. The success of the conference is mainly upon our transformation. If we are transformed , then we become sharing. Let us become transformed to sharing as a result of the conference, Holy Qurbana and prayer.: For fasting , prayer and almsgiving are the three gifts from God. Amen.

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RUTH   SYMBOLIZES 'JESUS'  

by Bency Philip Thevarkattil

As we go through the story of Ruth's life in the book of Ruth in Old Testament, we come to know that she is reflecting 'Jesus'. Ruth was a woman who was willing to work for others and sacrifice her own interests, happiness and needs for others. Ruth worked very hard for her family from morning to evening without resting a moment. 

This shows Ruth's love toward her family. Ruth was symbolizing Jesus' life. As Jesus was crucified on the cross for humanity, metaphorically Ruth was also sacrificing herself for others. She left her house and sacrificed everything to follow her mother- in- law, Naomi. " Turn back my daughters, go your way, for I am too old to have a husband." Naomi said to her daughters- in- law, Ruth and Orpah. But Ruth replied, "Entreat me not to leave you or to return from following you, for where you go, I will go and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people and your God my God" (Ruth 1:15). This highlights Ruth's sacrificial act of leaving everything behind to protect her mother-in-law in her old age. If we analyze the life history of Ruth more deeply, we can say the life she got with Boaz is a blessing for the obedience and love towards her mother-in-law or a pay back for all her sufferings. Thus the book of Ruth shows the strength of love and its gifts. We should shape our lives by Jesus' teachings and by following the path Ruth showed us through her life. We should have the spirit of sacrifice. Through our sacrifices we will get closer to God and understand the real essence of his teachings. Love, patience, kindness, forgiveness, caring and understanding are the building blocks of a peaceful life. It is also a powerful weapon to resist hatred and all sins that cause hatred. St. Paul explained the gifts of love in 1 Corinthians, verse 13,

Love is patient
Love is kind
Love does not envy
Love does not boast
It is not proud
It is not rude
It is not self-seeking
It is not easily angered
It keeps no record of wrongs
Love does not delight in evil
Love always hopes
Love always preserves
Love never fails

As Christians, we should be able to love, care and forgive others. Loving, caring and forgiving others should not be a mask for our motivations. It should be done sincerely. Jesus forgave those who crucified him on the cross. In the midst of the pain, Jesus said "Lord forgive them for they do not know what they are doing" (Luke 23:32). Through this passage, Jesus teaches us a lesson of forgiveness and love.

We can change out lives by making love as the main focus of our life. Stretch out our hands towards the poor, needy and sick. Give them food if they are hungry. Pray for those who are suffering and help those who need help. Thus we should be able to love, care and meet the legitimate needs of others. Ruth quietly followed the commandments and inherited a blessed life.

Likewise, if we follow the commandments and fulfill our duties honestly, even though sometimes we have to endure pain, we will also be able to enjoy a peaceful and blessed life. Living as prescribed by Jesus and following his model, we should also pray and submit ourselves to his will. A life lived like this will be its own reward.

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Christian News 2001 : Looking Back

CHRISTMAS IN JERUSALEM WITH OUT ARAFAT:

During the Christmas Midnight Mass, 2001, in St. Catherine Church, Bethlehem , the front row seat normally occupied by the Palestinians' Muslim leader Yasser Arafat was seen empty. A black and white checkered keffiyeh headdress which is trademark of the Palestinian leader, draped across it, symbolized Arafat's absence during the Midnight Mass at St. Catherine Church next to the Church of the Nativity, built over Jesus's birthplace. In front of the chair was a lectern, padded with gold upholstery, and a sign with Arafat's name.  

It was the first Christmas Arafat, a Muslim, has missed the Midnight Mass since the Palestinian Authority took charge of the West Bank town in 1995 and he had to spend the  Christmas away from Bethlehem. Arafat usually heads the celebrations of the nativity, attending the midnight mass.

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon  blocked Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat from visiting Christ's birthplace Bethlehem in the West Bank this Christmas. The 72-year-old Palestinian leader officially filed a request with Israel's defense ministry  to allow him to attend the midnight service in Bethlehem, which according to Christian tradition is Jesus' birthplace, to join Christian Palestinians in worship. Israeli official banned him from visiting the basilica unless he first arrests the people who killed Israeli tourism minister Rehavam Zeevi in October. The Israeli official also demanded the arrest of Ahmed Saadat, head of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestinian, which claimed the assassination. The Israeli decision has been criticized by the Vatican, and several other Countries.

Another empty chair was reserved for Bethlehem Mayor Hanna Nasser, who boycotted the service because Arafat was banned.

POPE VISIT A MOSQUE IN SYRIA:

Pope John Paul II has become the first Pope to enter a Muslim Mosque. During his visit to Syria, he entered Great Omayyad Mosque in Damascus. He  issued a plea for Christians and Muslims to forgive each other for the past and opinioned that religious conviction was never a justification for violence. He preached for a better mutual understanding between the two religions, not in opposition as has happened too often in the past, but in partnership for the good of the human family.

In spite of the Pope's appeal, Syria and Israel exchanged attacking  statements each other regarding  the Pope's visit. The papal visit has revived a sense of unity and pride among Syria's Christians, who practiced their faith through centuries in a Muslim-dominated country. At a Sunday mass, Pope urged Christians, Muslims and Jews to take bold action to bring about peace in their region.

Pope went on  6 day pilgrimage to Greece, Syria and Malta to improve the relations with Orthodox Christians and Muslims.

ATTACK ON CHRISTIANS IN PAKISTAN:

16 people were brutally massacred during a church service in Behawalpur of  Pakistan on a Sunday Service. This violence on a Sunday was the worst in memory of Pakistani Christian Community. Immediately after the attack, President Gen. Pervez Musharraf ordered security increase at Christian Churches through Pakistan. The Church of Pakistan, which has about 800,000 members,  and brings together Anglicans, Methodists, Presbyterians, Lutherans and other Protestants

EARLY MIDNIGHT MASS IN INDIA DUE TO SUPREME COURT VERDICT:

Supreme Court order banning the use of loudspeakers after 10 pm in open air places, has put Christian churches in India to begin Midnight Mass early this year. Midnight Mass, the traditional celebration of Christmas, is an intrinsic part of Christian heritage. To accommodate the large numbers, Big Churches held the midnight mass in the open spaces. But this year, Mass had to be held indoors, because of the SC ruling.

The Sanctity of Christmas, lies with Midnight Mass, and this ruling  made this year Christmas a bit gloomy. Even though there was no total  ban on holding the Mass during Midnight, or on carol singing , loudspeakers and  public address system were banned  after 10 PM . If the Service is held inside a hall, the use of loudspeakers were permitted even at midnight.

The main issue  was that many large parishes have vast congregations, which cannot be accommodated inside churches and forced them to conduct mass early or to accommodate the crowd in-house.

INDIAN CHRISTIAN WOMEN GET BETTER DEAL IN DIVORCE LAW:

The new Indian Christian Divorce Bill gives the same rights to men and women for annulment of marriage  and  widens the grounds for divorce. This was reformation of the 132 year old Indian Christian Divorce law, which was prejudiced in favor of men. Also the reforming bill lifts the ceiling on alimony, which was fixed at one-fifth of the husband's income, and allows divorce by mutual consent after a two year mandatory wait. The bill has been stuck several times in the past, and many women forced to face  physical or mental torture in their marriages and to continue with a life of burden.

A woman had to produce an eye witnesses or some other clear evidence like photographs to prove the adultery of her husband, which was often next to impossible. It was a Herculean task  for a woman to prove charges like incest, impotency and desertion to get a divorce granted. Also Old Divorce needed the wife to make multiple charges against the Husband.

Even if a woman got a judgment in her favor from the district court, she had to appear before a special bench of the high court for  confirmation of  the decree. Divorce could have sought only under the Special Marriage Act, 1956, which is applicable to any religion, in which case the couples had to  register their marriage with the registrar's office following the sacrament done  in Church.

The new bill may change this disadvantage for the petitioner woman for getting divorce from a husband  with whom life become a torturous.

APPRAISAL FOR KERALA ARTIST FOR HIS PAINTING OF CHRIST:

Gijo Thayyil, a Kerala Christian had depicted an adolescent Christ  in his canvass, which was appraised by many dignitaries in the world. Congratulatory letters had been pouring from several world and Church leaders including Pope John Paul II, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan,  British Prime Minister Tony Blair, for this young artist from Kerala.

Indian President K.R. Narayanan too had congratulated 28-year-old Gijo for his unique painting of an adolescent Christ. This work of Gijo is the only one of its kind. He sent copies out to distinguished personalities across the world

Gijo who is a native of Kottayam in Kerala painted this exemplary work out of his inspiration to draw Christ in late teens 'Celestial Bliss' .  

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Re-defining Of The Self:A deviation From The Original Purpose
By Fr.Shebaly 

Dearly beloved,
Greetings to you all, in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ !

The purpose of any object exists in the mind of the creator.

And if the object itself starts reviewing its purpose and re-defining the original purpose, it will have no place in the Creators Kingdom any more. This is a natural law, as we all know. For instance, take the case of a table. The table is first created in the mind of its creator-the carpenter. Intending a special purpose only, he designs and creates it.

When the creator's work is finished, the object will come out from his mind to form a concrete material to perceive. Then we say 'the table,' exists. Then it becomes a reality before our eyes. What is a table for? The answer itself is the purpose to which it has been created for.

The concept of the table was evolved in the mind of the creator, took form in his workshop, and placed before our eyes to serve the creator's purpose. Let us think of the table as a living object. It begins to deviate from the original purpose it was created for. Suppose a man wants to use the table but the table starts bending one of it's legs or the table top starts to form a cone shape. The man would not be able to use it. If that happens, we could think of its destiny. Then the place table would be in the astray. This logic is very simple.

Take the instance of a child going to school at the age of three. The purpose of this is for the child to learn. However, the child would not have any purpose in his or her mind. But the purpose of sending the child to the school is in the mind of the parents.

If the child could cop up with the purpose, he or she will come up well in his or her life. If the child is going against the purpose of learning and tries to redefine the purpose by his or her own self, the child would be taken out and put into some other place for a correction in order to be back to the original purpose. If this is correct, we must have awareness on the very purpose of our life. For that we have to look into the mind of the creator and His will. "Are we serving the purpose of our very life according to Him or not?" is the basic question we have before us.

Jesus healed the demon possessed boy whom the disciples could not heal. Jesus assigned the failure of the disciples to cure the boy not to Gods will, but to the discipleís lack of faith. (Mt 17: 19-20; Mk 9:17-18). If sickness is the will of God every hospital would be against Godís will. Christ came to do the Fatherís will and He healed them all ( Mt 8:16, Mk 6:55-56, Lk 4:40 ).Isaiah clearly prophesied the mission of Christ ( Is 61:1-4 ).

Will of God or the creator about human race is to leaving death behind , to achieve everlasting life as bible says.(Jn.3:16)

Are we moving in the right direction till this life? If not, we must know that only a set time is before us for correction and coming back to the original purpose. It is just like college life. You cannot extend your time your own.

Once the course is over you have to leave the campus and it won't be a place for you any more. If you serve the purpose and win well and fine, you will be honored.

The whole Bible is about that and the apostles explain it in this way.

"There are two ways, one of life and one of death and there is a great difference between the two ways." Didache 1:1

"Stop for a moment, think about it, and find out the exact place where you are standing right now, go with the original purpose of your life without redefining it on your own. The bible assures you that you will be a winner. And that is what we are all about.

Fr. Shebaly

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DUAL PERSONALITY DEALT WITH PSYCHO - RELIGIOUS THERAPY-2

By Fr.Geo Kappalumakal

(Fr.Geo. Kappalumakal, now in his sixties, is a catholic priest from the Dioceses of  Palai, Kottayam Dst. Kerala, South India. He is running a counseling center for psycho religious therapy, a name coined by himself, a branch of psychiatry formed from his 45 years of research and experience. Has cured above fifty thousand mental patients who were sick by fright, during the period. But only thirty five thousand cases are documented. The cases cured while a parish priest in various churches were not documented. He took leave in1982 and started the counseling center with the blessings of the Bishop Mar Sebastian Vayalil, who ordained him priest) 

Illness of a pretty large number of neurotics and psychotics is rather confusing and at times confounding to the modern psychology. Medical science stands perplexed and bewildered in many such cases where neither diagnosis could be actual nor treatment of any use. I have personally come across hundreds of cases of this type and to corroborate this medical records of them have been preserved. They are available for study and scrutiny. 

There are a large number of cases with various signs and symptoms of illness after prolonged treatment for months and years together wherein physicians, psychiatrists, neurologists and psychologists have categorically ruled out the slightest possibility of cure, have successfully left this Psycho Religious Therapy Centre completely cured. I have directed some of these people to the concerned authorities who treated them earlier with letters of accounting the radical cause of their illness and their sudden cure without any medication. I asked them to fix an appointment at their convenience so that I could brief them of the cases. I regret to note that only very few have bothered to respond. 

A few eminent personalities who might have been vexed tried to subject me to ridicule saying "let the white cassocked priest administer the sacraments instead of indulging in black magic, I have not studied and practiced the third class sorcery and incantation. I cannot dupe anyone as he , the priest, does. Do not come to me in future with any complaints. Go to him." This is the attitude!. It is paradoxical, indeed!

However, I do appreciate and acknowledge with satisfaction and gratitude the co-operation extended by a few eminent doctors like Dr.Valliathan, the former Director of Sri Chitra and Dr.K.Radhakrishnan, Professor and Head of the Department of Neurology. They were eager to know more about Psycho Religious Therapy.

Let me put down one such case that confounded the medical science for over two years, confusing the specialists. Though they could not diagnose and pin point the radical cause thereof they firmly ruled out the possibility of its cure!.

THE BOY OBSESSED WITH THE SPIRIT OF A DEAD MAN: TRUE STORY

Vijayakumar, a boy of 12 years with a pleasing appearance, was a brilliant student of standard VII. Everyone liked the smart and cute boy. His father is a Class I officer in the Kerala Government Service and mother a school teacher. They had high ambition about their youngest son Vijayakumar. They admitted him in the best school in the town nearby. Like all other parents they wished that their son become a high ranking official in future. As they were financially sound they did not mind spending money for his education. The boy too rose to the expectation and kept pace with their ardent desire. He stood first in the examinations. He won prizes for academic excellence. In fact, the parents were really proud of him. Unlike other children, Vijayakumar wasted no time in front of the TV. But he used to read books and reading was his hobby.

One evening he happened to see a snake near the neighbouring well. Looking at him it started hissing. Raising the head it started to dandle slowly. Terror stricken, the boy ran home and held the hands of his mother. He was shivering and gasping. He told his parents that he saw a snake of huge size. They consoled him telling that what he saw is a non-poisonous snake which does no harm to anyone. That night he went to sleep as usual. At night he had a dream in his sleep and got up with a frantic cry. His parents rushed immediately to his bed side. They saw him sitting on the bed weeping profoundly. His eyes were fixed on the floor! His lips were stiff and dry. His face was pale and dark! On repeated questioning, he said "Mummy, I saw a ferocious dragon on this floor. It lifted me from the bed. Suddenly I woke up. Please give me some water." His father took him to his bed and put him to sleep there with him. After some time he noticed that Vijayakumar was getting a high temperature. Early in the morning he was taken to a hospital where he remained admitted for five days. On the sixth day he was discharged and brought home. After one day's rest he was sent to school.

As days passed, the parents noticed some major changes in his behaviour and conduct. He showed dislike and aversion to reading books and studying lessons. He complained of gradual loss of hearing sense. He was short of hearing normal sound. On the advice of the doctor who treated him for high temperature, the parents took him to the Medical College Kottayam. The specialists examined him and prescribed medicines. But the treatment had no substantial effect and the boy continued to be in the same condition, though had a little relief on certain days for a short time. After a few months' treatment, they directed the parents to take the boy to Medical College Trivandrum. In order to make the parents to be mentally prepared to accept the reality, the specialists informed them that his sense of hearing would not be restored fully.

He was admitted in the Medical College Hospital Trivandrum. During these days the parents and doctors noticed that the boy had great difficulty to speak as well. They knew that he was gradually losing his sense of speech too. The parents were highly depressed. Even after prolonged tests and examinations and going through the medical records of the boy, the doctors disclosed that audibility would not be restored. They also told them that he would lose the power of speech too since the ENT section is slowly being damaged. They reached the conclusion that nothing more could be done in this case. However, they advised the parents to consult the specialist at the All India Institute for Speech and Hearing, Gangothri, Mysore. This is the one and only institution of its kind in India at that time. 

But meanwhile, as advised and directed by some, they took the boy to Sri Chitra Medical Centre, Trivandrum, one of the best in India. But going through the charters of previous treatments of the Medical College Hospitals, the doctors informed the parents that nothing more can be done there, since whatever available in the line of technology and treatment has already been made use of. They also suggested as a last resort the All India Institute for Speech and Hearing, Gangothri.

On the way to the Institute for Speech and Hearing, Gangothri, Mysore, the parents also approached the Kasturba Medical College. There too the specialists expressed their inability to do anything in this case. However, they booked his name for consultation of their visiting Professor from USA on his next visit. From there they took him to the All India Institute for Speech and Hearing, Gangothri, Mysore. He was admitted there. During these days, the condition of the boy started getting deteriorated. He became completely deaf and partially dumb. After a few months' treatment, a set of ear phones was fitted to enable him to manage. That was all they could do in his case. Blaming their fate they all returned home. The boy was sent to school the next day. He could not attend the classes well, nay more, his friends called him "Deaf". Out of despair, he discontinued his studies.

Still the parents were not mentally prepared to accept the "reality" expressed by the specialists. They took him back to Dr.Madhusudanan, head and Professor, Neurology Department, Medical College, Kottayam where the boy was under his expert investigation for ten days. Since no improvement was noticed, the doctor discharged him and they went home.

On a Friday, as per advanced booking, Vijayakumar was brought to the Georgian Counselling Centre at Chethimattam, Pala. At about 5 p.m., his turn came up for counselling and therapy. His parents narrated the whole episode. A bundle of scraped papers consisting of his medical records and prescriptions was placed on my table. I called the boy near me and looking at his face asked him a few questions very loudly. Since ear phone was fitted, it seemed that he could manage to hear my questions to some extent. But his response was not intelligible.

 It was hard for him to speak. Having seen the boy and the medical records, I informed them with an apology that I would not have asked them to bring the boy to me here, had they apprised me of the actual condition of the boy and his ailment. After a perusal of the medical documents, I was of the opinion that the ailment was physical and hence beyond the limits of my treatment. I decided to convey this to the parents. However, to have a better credence to the parents in this regard, I took the boy to my therapy room and made him sit in the chair and simply started the process of Psycho Religious Therapy. He was upset and started tottering. He became ferocious and his face turned fierce as if having an illusory personality as I have often noted in other cases. In no time, he went into a deep' Trance'.

"What is your name?" I asked. "I am Ramakrishna Pillai."

Good! He heard my question and his reply was very distinct and clear! I was puzzled, but very happy!. This case is well within the limits of my treatment, Psycho Religious Therapy!

"Can't you hear without the ear phone?" I asked. "Yes, I can." Ear phone was removed. "Are you a dead person"? I asked. Yes"

"You have been tormenting this boy for the last two years or so making him deaf and dumb. You could very well dupe the doctors of many hospitals without appearing before them. But here, you have utterly failed before me. Are you not convinced of the fact that you cannot escape from here?"

"Yes, I am fully convinced." "Don't you know that your existence depends on my mercy and kindness?" I asked. "Yes, I do know. Please don't destroy me. I shall tell you everything."

"Mr.Ramakrishna Pillai, plain speaking only will help you. If you try to be over-smart and say concocted story of lies, woe to you! You will suffer severe pain and the ultimate penalty will be your complete annihilation. To know the kind of pain that I can inflict on you, be ready to suffer. You will feel severe pain all throughout your body." I suggested. Immediately he started wriggling and twirling about in acute pain.

"I shall tell you the whole truth. I request you not to cause me any more affliction." The voice of a mature man came from the lips of the boy and I got convinced that the illusory personality is now well within the range of my therapy!.

"Ok. I agree. Let your pain subside." I suggested. Immediately he became at ease. "Tell me everything from the beginning." I demanded.

Ramakrishna Pillai started unfolding his fabulous biography.

"I was an officer in the judicial service. My house is adjacent to that of this boy. I have three daughters only. Vijayakumar this boy is the youngest of Kesavan Nair's five children. I was longing for a son. Since I had no sons, I liked this boy very much. I wished if he would be mine! Putting him in my lap, I used to fondle and caress him. I took him to my house often. Both of our families were close by and in cordial relation. I used to bring sweets and offer him on my return from my office. He was eagerly looking forward to my arrival. This was routine. Neither he nor I could be away without meeting each other. We liked each other so much. Years passed."

"Three years back, one day I felt severe stomach ache some time after midnight. At about 2 'O clock, I went to the well side. While drawing water from the well, unfortunately I fell down into the deep well. Nobody noticed it. I was drowned. In the morning, my wife and children found my body in the well. Vijayakumar wept very bitterly. Seeing my dead body, he was upset. Cherishing the fondest memory of our association, he spent those days. I was waiting at the well side with the ardent desire to see him. One fine evening, he came to the well. I was there in the form of a snake. I lifted my head to have a glance of my beloved Vijayakumar. He saw me. Suddenly he was shocked and engulfed with fear. That night he was in deep thought of me and the dreadful sight of the snake. During his sleep I appeared before him in my real form."

"What is your real form?" I asked.

"My head on the body of the snake. He was frightened at the awful sight. He got up gasping and shivering. On awakening from sleep he was in a changed environment. His parents were around him near the bed. By this time I had taken over full control of his mind. Later, he started getting high temperature. When admitted in the hospital, I was with him all along. I must kill and take him with me. I want him to be with me for ever."

Ramakrishna Pillai disclosed his designs. "How will you kill him?" I asked.

"As I told you earlier, his aim was to study well and get a prominent job in Government service. I will make him neglect his studies. For that I made him deaf. His parents took him to many major hospitals, but in vain. I could block his recovery. When ear phone was fitted he could hear a little. So I took away his sense of speech. Can they fit in any instrument to give back his power of speech? No, they cannot. Moreover, when his class mates called him deaf, he was desperate. He was indeed frustrated since he could not concentrate in studies. I know that. He will attempt to suicide out of frustration and despair. I am grooming him gradually to commit suicide. He himself will destroy his life and join with me. Then he will be mine for ever." Ramakrishna Pillai paused for a while.

Hearing this, Vijayakumar's mother fell flat on the sofa where she was sitting. She wept, cried. I enquired of her as to what caused her to fall. She said, "Father, for the last few days, he used to pick up the newspaper as soon as it was supplied. He used to search enthusiastically for news on suicide. He was not interested in reading anything else. My son would have committed suicide had he not been taken over here to you! God has saved my son." She wept bitterly.

"Ramakrishna Pillai, tell me, what for this boy was searching for the particular news item on suicide in the newspapers?" I asked him.

"To find out the easiest way of committing suicide." The reply was prompt and firm. The parents confirmed whatever was disclosed by Ramakrishna Pillai through the boy, was entirely correct.

I completed the process of Psycho Religious Therapy and the boy woke up from the mesmeric trance. He looked around. He was happy and wonder struck. The parents were rejoicing on the sudden change and complete cure of their son. More than 15 people were present to witness this.

"Father, what shall I give you for this great help you have rendered? No reward will be enough, I know. I have already spent more than one lakh rupees for his treatment in vain. But here, I have paid only Rs.50/- as registration fee. I am ready to spend any amount as your reward. Please tell me, father, I will be happy to do that." He was in tears of joy.

"Remember me in your prayers. Pray to the Almighty for me and for this institution whenever you can. That is enough and all that is what I require. You have already lost a good sum." I told him.

With hands folded in sincere gratitude, they greeted me and went home joyfully, placing the ear phone on my table, and is there to this day. The boy is now studying in the college.

Is this the spirit (soul or "pretham") of Ramakrishna Pillai, that haunted the child for three years, making him deaf and mute? "Yes", say the people unanimously, who witnessed the scene, according to the common belief. The sickness and the travails of the boy during the last three years and the narration during the therapy correspond to the common belief and carry conviction!

But apart from the common belief, is it actually the "spirit" of Mr.Pillai? No! It is an "illusory personality" !!!

The explanation of the "how and why of it" will be  followed in the next issue:
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CHILDREN'S PAGE

Bible Word to by heart:

'Christ is Coming Again! Let us be diligent then to Obey Him Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ '

                                                                                   (
Titus 2:13)

CHRISTMAS : A TIME FOR SHARING & SACRIFICE
By Princy Miriam Mathew, Bombay

Christmas is a time of happiness as Christ is born for us in this day. This is a day for joy and merry making. While enjoying on this day, many a time we forget that this is a day of sharing, caring and sacrifice. We do have to share the happiness and tears with others, we have to care for each other and we should be willing to sacrifice for others. We send Christmas Cards and Greetings to our beloved ones and friends to show our care to them. At least We remember them during this festive occasion.

I like to share with you a short story to show the sacrifice of the beloved ones during Christmas time.

There was a very loving Husband and Wife who cared for everything each other. Unfortunately they lost their Job and Business during a Christmas season and there was nothing left for them to live with. Every Christmas they were exchanging some sort of gift out of their riches. But this time there was nothing left to buy the Christmas gifts.

During the eve of Christmas the wife thought 'Even though I don't give any costly gift to Tom this time, I have to give him some small surprise gift.' She knew that Tom is a very punctual man and he always value for the Time, so the best gift may be a strap for his watch as his strap is pretty old. As she did not have enough money she decided to cut her beautiful hair and sell it and buy the strap.

At the same time Tom thought ' I should definitely give a surprise gift to Maggie.' As he knew that her hair is very beautiful and a decorative Slide for her hair will be the right choice. As he did not have enough money to buy it, he decided to sell his watch and buy a decorative Slide for Maggie. So they both sacrificed the thing which each other thought valuable to them.

On the Christmas day when they meet each other, you can imagine the bliss of their sacrifice.

Wish You all a Happy Christmas.

INVITATION FOR A BIRTH DAY PARTY
by Bro. Paul Ciniraj Mohamed

From
Jesus Christ,
By the right of the Father,
Heaven

Dear sweet children of my blood of blood
and spirit of spirit

I am glad you are in the spirit of Christmas,
celebrating my birthday.
Sure my blessings be upon you
when you reflect loved ones
with greetings and presents both far and near.
But, don't forget
to pray for the broken hearted -
to give to the poor;
to feed the hungry that come to your door.
You look at that beggar,
he is an angel in disguise.

The best Christmas gift that you could ever give
is yourself for the gift of my life to you.
I came as a baby and left as a man.
If you just take me in to the manger of your heart,
I can rest there and cleanse all your sins.

Give me your heart as a present this
Christmas Day,
Invite me into your heart on my birthday
and ask me to stay.

Come all of you who hunger and thirst
after righteousness and follow me....
I will forgive you......
I gave my life for you.
What more could I give?
My life for your sins so that eternally you can live.
I gave my life because I couldn't bare to live with out you.
Come, Come let me love you today.
Cry out I will hear you and kiss your tears away.
I give you a promise.
If you believe in me and ask me to come
into your heart
I will come there and set you FREE from all your burdens.
I will be there always for you
and will not leave you nor forsake you.
For I am forgiving and loving and kind.
Accept my invitation of love
my pure love divine.

Ever lovingly
(your heart and your trust)

JESUS

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Satire

THE TWO SHEPHERDS

By John Kunnathu

Once upon a time there lived a little lamb called Baby. He lived with Papa, Mamma, brothers, sisters, cousins, and all the other family members. During the daytime he would go out with them to eat grass and drink water. Also he would get some free time to play with his cousins and friends. 

One day Baby noticed the shepherd for the first time. He looked different from his papa, mamma, and all the others around him.
"Mamma, isn't that a sheep? He asked.
"No Baby," mamma replied. "That is a human being. He is our shepherd. We belong to him. He cares for us. He leads and guides us to find food and water. He also protects us from wolves and other such animals."  

After that day, Baby would go near the shepherd, look at his face, and touch his feet. That is how Baby expressed his love and admiration toward the shepherd. The shepherd, who understood the language of Baby, took him in his hands and caressed him gently. Baby enjoyed it very much. Afterwards, Baby would never lose a chance to spend time with the shepherd.

One night, baby woke up hearing loud noises and an unusual commotion. "Mamma, Mamma," Baby cried loudly. "What's the matter? What's the matter?" he was curious. "It is a wolf," mamma said. "But we don't need to worry. Our shepherd will take care of it," she assured.

They could hear the voices of the shepherd chasing the wolf. The next morning Baby found out that one of his dear friends narrowly escaped from the wolf because of the timely action of the shepherd. Baby developed more admiration and love for the shepherd.

After a few days, a similar incident occurred. A cousin of Baby narrowly escaped from the wolf. Baby began to be very cautious after these incidents. The slightest noise in the night began to wake him up.

One night a sound made Baby wake up. His papa was walking out quietly. Seeing Baby awake, he said," The shepherd, he is calling me. Let me go find out what he wants." Wondering why the shepherd called his papa at he middle of the night, Baby went back to sleep. The next morning when Baby woke up, papa was still not there. Baby ran around looking for his papa, but he wasn't found anywhere. Never did he see his papa any more. The memories of his papa filled his heart with sadness.

AAfter a few days, Baby woke up hearing a sound. Someone was opening the door. Oh! It is the shepherd. He probably wants to make sure that all sheep are safe. The shepherd walked very quietly around, careful not to wake up any sheep. When he came very close to Baby, he greeted the shepherd. Hearing the unexpected voice, the shepherd moved quickly and jumped over the fence. It was the first time Baby seeing the shepherd jumping over the fence. He had always seen him coming in and going out through the door. Also, was there anything unusual about the way the shepherd smelled? Baby wondered.

Another night baby woke up at night to see the shepherd walking around. Though he wanted to greet the shepherd, he didn't, remembering the previous day's incident. He went back to sleep. The next morning he woke up hearing the loud wailing of a cousin of his. "Mamma, Mamma," he cried loudly. His mamma was missing. What is happening? Baby began to think hard. His papa disappeared a few days ago. Now the mamma of his cousin has disappeared. There seems to be some connection between the appearance of the shepherd at night, and the disappearance of the sheep. Moreover, there was something weird about the behavior of the shepherd at night. He jumps over the fence at night. Also he smells different at night.

T he next night, some sounds woke Baby up. He saw his mamma getting ready to go out. "Mamma," Baby asked, "Where are you going?"
"To the shepherd," she replied. "He woke me up and asked me to go out to him. He is waiting outside for me." These words made baby a shiver of fear.
"Mamma," Baby cried bitterly. "Are you going away like papa?" Mamma was surprised at the reaction of baby.
"Baby!" she tried to console him. "It is our shepherd. How can I go away like papa? I will be back in a minute."
"No Mamma," Baby pleaded. "Please don't go. There is something weird about the shepherd coming here at night, and the sheep disappearing. That is how papa disappeared. That is how my cousin's mamma disappeared."
"What do you mean?" mamma asked unbelievingly.
"Mamma, I have seen the shepherd several times at night. He smells different then. Also, he acts different. He jumps over the fence at night, but I have never seen him doing that at daytime. The night papa disappeared, he went out telling me that the shepherd wanted him outside. Also, he happened to be here the night my cousin's mamma disappeared.
" Mamma, please don't go!"
Something flashed through the mamma's mind.
"Come," she said. "Let's go find our shepherd where he is asleep."
They walked quietly to the room of the shepherd where they found him fast asleep. Baby wondered how the shepherd could be waiting outside if he is sleeping here.
"Our shepherd is here," Mamma said. "The one waiting outside is ...the wolf in the shepherd's clothing."
"The wolf?" Baby cried in disbelief.
"Quiet!" mamma said. "We have to put an end to this. He would have killed me by now if you had not stopped me, baby! You are a wonderful kid!"
"What can we do?" Baby wondered.
"Wait, I have a plan," Mamma said. She approached the sleeping shepherd and touched him gently to wake him up. When he woke up, the mamma quickly moved toward his staff he had kept at the corner, and touched it.

The shepherd immediately understood the language of the mamma sheep. He jumped up, took the staff, and followed the mamma as fast as he could.

He looked at the other "shepherd" with disbelief. My God! There stood the wolf in shepherd's clothing. He used to come here without any disguise, but he could not catch any sheep. Now he is here disguised as a shepherd.

Without wasting any more time, the shepherd gave a hard blow on the head of the unsuspecting wolf, and that was its end. Hearing the commotion and the noise, all the sheep woke up and came outside to see the two shepherds: the real one and the fake one. Upon hearing the story of all that happened, Baby became a hero among them.

                      ( Further reading suggested . Jn.10.)

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