The recent move by the Church of England to allow ordination of women as bishops has caused ripples among traditionalists in the Indian church especially in this region, the seat of Syrian Christianity, with top religious leaders opposing it tooth and nail, asserting that episcopacy was not the job of the fair sex.
As the historic decision of the Anglican Church, the most influential Protestant congregation, created a vertical split in the Anglican communion in Britain and rest of the world, top church leaders in Kottayam lost no time in denouncing the move.
"It is not a question of faith but tradition. Christianity extends all considerations to women. Women are not inferior as they are equal before God," Council of Christian Churches of India (CCCI) President Arch Bishop Stephen Vattappara told PTI.
"Equality does not mean that mother becomes a father as both have distinct features and functions and should be maintained as such," he said in Kottayam.
The CCCI, formed in 1973 as the Indian arm of the International Council of Christian Churches and comprising Anglican, Methodist, Presbyterian and Anglican orthodox churches, declared its stand on the issue at its three-day national assembly held in Kurici near in Kottayam recently.