Land deal: Power shift announced in Archdiocese
By: Matters India Reporter In light of the recent land transaction scandal of Ernakulam-Angamaly archdiocese in which Cardinal George Alencherry was implicated for causing serious financial losses to the diocese, he has delegated more powers to his auxiliary bishops. Cardinal Alencherry made the announcement in a joint circular with auxiliary bishops Sebastian Adayanthrath and Jose Puthenveettil. The circular was read at all churches under the archdiocese on Sunday, February 11. In the circular, the bishops acknowledge the distress caused to the members of the Diocese as a result of the recent land deal scandal. They added that the hectic responsibilities of the Cardinal have contributed to him not getting enough time to address the issues in his role as the bishop of the diocese. Hence he has delegated the administration of the diocese to the current protosyncellus and auxiliary bishop Sebastian Adayanthrath . He would be supported in this role by present syncellus and auxilliary bishop Jose Puthenveettil. They will also be responsible for convening and presiding over the canonical committees of the diocese. They are expected to submit regular reports to Cardinal Alencherry, but any major decisions will still need to be taken in discussion with him. The circular goes on to entrust bishop Adayanthrath to find a solution for the issues relating to the recent financial losses for the diocese. This will be taken in consultation with the diocese bodies such as finance council, curia and the priests’ council. Earlier, the archdiocesan Presbyterial Council had alleged that a commission appointed by the cardinal to enquire into the land business had found serious violations of canon and civil laws. According to the priests, the commission found that the revenue from sale of 3.06 acres of the land in Kochi city was expected to fetch 270 million rupees as per the understanding, but officially only 90 million rupees had been shown as sale proceeds. In the circular, the bishops reiterated the need for creating a conducive atmosphere for resolving these issues. They requested those involved to avoid any unofficial intervention through social and other media. According to reports, the priests who were alleged to have been involved in the land deal have also been moved. Archdiocese finance officer Fr Joshy Puthuva has been transferred as the vicar of a parish while vicar-general Fr Sebastian Vadakkumpadan has been relieved of all diocesan duties.
Source: TopStory- Matters India