THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Taking a cue from Pope Francis’ call to make 2016 a Year of Mercy, a bishop in Kottayam district of Kerala has decided to donate one of his kidneys to a Hindu youth.
The Bishop of Pala diocese of the Syro-Malabar Church, Jacob Muricken, will donate his kidney to 30-year-old Sooraj who is undergoing dialysis for over a year after both his kidneys failed.
The bishop learnt of Sooraj’s plight from the chairman of the Kidney Federation of India, Father Davis Chiramel, who himself donated one of his kidneys to a patient seven years ago.
The bishop said he was inspired by Father Chiramel.
“I told the father that I will be happy to part with one of my kidneys. He told me about Sooraj. Happy that it is happening in the Year of Mercy,” said the 52-year-old bishop.
Sooraj, the sole bread-earner of his family, was diagnosed with a serious kidney ailment two years ago. Hailing from a poor background, he had registered himself with the Kidney Federation of India last year, and was desperately waiting for a donor.
“This is the first time a bishop will donate his organ. If everything goes well, the transplant will take place in Kochi next week,” said Chiramel.
Inspired by Chiramel’s humanitarian work, Kochouesph Chittilapilly, chairman of the ‘V Guard’ group, had donated a kidney to a truck driver in 2011. In 2012, villagers of Pootharakkal in Thrissur had set a record by vowing to donate their organs after death. “I dream of a country where not a single person dies for want of organs,” said Chiramel.