KOCHI: The activists of various laity organisations under the banner of ‘Church Act Action Council’ took out a protest march to the Bishop’s House, Ernakulam, on Saturday seeking immediate steps to solve the series of controversies and the open fight within the Syro-Malabar Church. The action council condemned the affidavit filed by Cardinal Mar George Alencherry before the High Court which stated that the laity has no right over the assets of the Church. The Cardinal submitted that the archdiocese of Ernakulam-Angamaly has every right to sell the land under its possession and that the members of the parishes do not have any right to interfere in the matter.
Addressing the protest meeting, Boris Paul, chairman of the action council, said that Church Act is the only effective way to make the functioning of the Church and management of Church properties effective and transparent.
“The allegations that the government will take control of the Church assets once the Act is enforced are baseless as it is not like the Devaswom Board. A committee elected by the laity will have complete control over Church properties and the clergy can focus on spiritual matters. All adult members of the Church will have voting power and an upper council of laity will be responsible for managing asse-ts,” said Joseph Varghese, vice-president of the action council.
Representatives of laity organisations like Catho-lic Federation and Kerala Catholic Renewal Move-ment participated.