The Malankara Orthodox Church was founded in Kerala, India, by St. Thomas the Apostle around AD 52. It is one of the most ancient churches of the world. The Malankara Orthodox Church is autonomous, like all the other Orthodox Churches. However, it belongs to the family of the Oriental Orthodox Churches. St. Gregorios Indian Orthodox Church is a parish under the Catholicate of the Malankara Orthodox Church.
The current supreme head of our church is Catholicose His Holines Baselius Marthoma Paulose 11, who is the apostolic successor of St. Thomas, the Apostle. Headquarters of our Church is at Devalokam, Kottayam, Kerala India.
There are 2 dioceses in North America for the Malankara Orthodox Church, the North East and the South West. T he North East diocese has its headquarters in New York. T he South West to which our church, the St. Gregorios Indian Orthodox Church, Edmonton belongs, has its headquarters in Houston, Texas.
St. Gregorios Orthodox Church in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada started as a prayer group in 1973 with few families in Edmonton along with the full support of families in the surrounding areas of Calgary, Fort McMurray, High Prairie, Hinton, Westlock and Saskatoon.
In our desire to have orthodox services in Edmonton in our mother tongue, we invited priests from United States and other visiting priests from Kerala, mainly during the Holy Week. W e started to bring priests from 1973 and this arrangement continued until 1986 at which time we were able to have a permanent resident priest. The present church building was purchased in 1987 and we modified the building to suit our orthodox service needs. We still conduct our s ervices at this location. Many individuals were significant contributors to the congregation in its formative stage. Among these, three names need special recognition. They are, late Mr. K.G. John, Mr. George Zachariah, who has relocated to India, and Ms. Annamma Mathews who is still continuing to give her silent support to the church activities.
Though we started the congregation with little over a dozen families, we are proud to say that we have over 100 paying families as our members. In addition, individuals and families of other orthodox faith attend our services on Sundays and other special days. Divine Liturgy on Sundays is conducted in Malayalam, vernacular of Kerala. Service starts at 08:30 and ends by 11:00. Normally, Sunday School and women’s league meet on a regular basis after lunch in the basement. On the third Sunday of each month Divine Liturgy is conducted in English for the benefit of our younger generation.
We welcome all Christians to join us in our Sunday Services. The Malankara Orthodox Church has Sacramental and Eucharistic partnership with other ancient oriental orthodox Christians – Coptic, Armenia, Ethiopian and Syrian. Our church is a member of World Council of Churches.