Bishop Geevarghese Mar Divannasios called to eternal rest

  • Posted on: 17 January 2018

His Excellency Most Rev. Geevarghese Mar Divannasios Ottathengil (67) Bishop Emeritus of Puthoor Diocese of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church was called to eternal rest on Tuesday, 16 January, 2018 at 2.30pm at Pushpagiri Medical College Hospital, Thiruvalla, Kerala. His Excellency went to the Lord peacefully a few hours ago after battling various health complications for some time.

The funeral will be held at 2pm on Thursday, 18 January, 2018 St. John's Cathedral, Thiruvalla, Kerala.

Rev. Dr.Geevarghese Mar Divannasios, the first bishop of the Eparchy of Puttur, was born on 1 November 1950 in the ancient Syrian Christian family of Ottathengil to N.S Varghese and Mariamma Varghese at Thalavady near Thiruvalla in Central Travancore. In 1956, his family migrated to South Canara in Karnataka. They stayed at several places in the district of South Canara and finally settled at Ichilampady, a small beautiful village in the district. In 1962 his family embraced the Catholic faith. He started his seminary formation after his school years in 1966 at Infant Mary Minor Seminary in the Eparchy of Tiruvalla. In 1970 he was sent to St. Paul’s Seminary at Trichy for Philosophical and Theological studies, where he learned Karnatic music. He was ordained a priest on 20 April 1978 by Benedict Mar Gregorios.

After his ordination, Fr. Varghese Ottathengil served various parishes as assistant vicar and vicar. In 1980 he was sent to Rome for higher studies, where he completed his doctorate in Spiritual Theology. He returned to Bathery in 1987 when he was appointed as the Rector of the minor seminary in the Eparchy of Bathery, and also served as the vicar of the Cathedral parish.He was appointed the Rector of the Major Seminary of the Malankara Catholic Church at its infancy in May 1990. The seminary developed further during his seven-year tenure as rector.

On 18 December 1996, Pope John Paul II appointed Varghese Ottathengil as the Bishop of Bathery, after Cyril Mar Baselios. He was consecrated a bishop on 5 February 1996 at Bathery by Cyril Mar Baselios and received the name Geevarghese Mar Divannasios. His sacerdotal Silver Jubilee was celebrated in 2003. He was the Administrator of the Malankara Catholic Church during the short period after the demise of Moran Mor Cyril Baselios Catholicos. On 25 January 2010, as per the decision of the Holy Episcopal Synod of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, and having consulted the Apostolic See of Rome, His Excellency Most Rev. Dr.Geevarghese Mar Divannasios was appointed as the first Bishop of the newly erected Eparchy of Puttur.

On January 24, 2017, His Grace submitted his resignation from office due to health. The Holy Synod accepted his resignation and appointed Rev Fr. George Kalayil, the vicar general, as interim administrator of the Eparchy. The bishop was in ill health for two weeks before being called to his eternal home.

The Queen of Peace Eparchy joins the Ottathengil family and the Malankara church in mourning and prayer for the departed prelate of venerable memory.