We place on record our heartfelt condolences on the sad demise of His Holiness Patriarch Moran Mor Igatius Zakka I of the Orthodox Syrian Church of Antioch and convey our prayers. The deep rooted relationship and the paternal affection His Holiness the Patriarch had for the Malankara Christian Community were really great.
The contributions made by His Holiness Patriarch Zakka I along with Blessed Pope John Paul II of happy memory in pursuit of unity between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church have been immensely valuable. I have been fortunate to visit His Holiness the Patriarch recently at his residence in Lebanon. I remember with gratitude the particular affection His Holiness showed to the Eastern Churches and to the Malankara Catholic Church and especially towards me personally.
I convey my condolences and prayers to the entire bereaved Orthodox Syrian Church especially his sheep in Malankara. The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India, Kerala Catholic Bishops’ Council and the Malankara Syrian Catholic Church join this bereavement and pray for the departed soul. On behalf of the Catholic Church in India, I convey the condolences and prayers to all the Faithful of the Orthodox Syrian Church.
+ Baselios Cardinal Cleemis
Major Archbishop-Catholicos of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church,
President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India &
Kerala Catholic Bishops’ Council.