Very Rev. P. T. Thomas
Mrs. Laly Kochamma
Dearly beloved in Christ,
Greetings in the precious name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
I am glad to write this first letter to you as the vicar of St Thomas Mar Thoma Parish, Bristol. I believe that God, through our church, gave me this opportunity to serve you. I request you all of your prayers and support for the meaningful ministry here.
In one of the best-loved passages in the New Testament (St John 10) Jesus describes himself as the Good Shepherd and Christian disciples as his sheep for whom he cares. That is to say, our life as Christians is ultimately about a relationship other than religion and about being friends with Jesus. As with any relationship, the key to success is communication.
Jesus said “My sheep, listen to my voice. I know them, and they follow me.” So the best start we can make is a resolution to listen to the voice of Jesus.
This month of October is important for us in many aspects.
In October we’re observing Family Sunday. Family is the foundational institution of society ordained by God. So the family is a covenantal community. Marriage, therefore, establishes a new relationship held together by the natural bond of the unbreakable covenant. Family is also a sacramental community — every Christian family is designed to be the reflection of the relationship between Christ and his Church. The real joy in the family comes from giving, not from getting. A family is a place of relationship. Being alone is not good for humans. Living together is an art which needs a lot of preparations, patience and prayer.
In December we are celebrating Christmas. What is Christmas? Christmas is the celebration of the historical event where God entered into our world so that he might display the perfection and holiness of God. So that through his work of living perfectly and also dying on the cross for our sins. However, unfortunately, it has become a commercial holiday rather than a religious one. Jesus, who was God in flesh, perfect, pure, holy and who died on the cross and rose from the dead, is one who gives the true meaning of Christmas.
Wish you all a meaningful Christmas and a blessed new year.
P. T. Thomas Achen