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The post-Portuguese story of the church in India from the 16th century- is relatively well documented. In their combined zeal to colonize and proselytize, the Portuguese might not have readily grasped the way of life of the Thomas Christians who seemed to accommodate differing strands of eastern Christian thought and influence, while preserving the core of their original faith. The response of the visitors was to try and bring them under Rome-Syrian prelates, apart from the new converts in the coastal areas under Latin prelates. Pushed beyond a limit, the main body of Thomas Christians rose in revolt and took a collective oath at the Coonen Cross in Mattancherry in 1653, resolving to preserve the faith and autonomy of their church and to elect its head. Accordingly, Archdeacon Thomas was raised to the title of Mar Thoma, the first in the long line up to Mar Thoma IX till 1816. At the request of the Thomas Christians, the "Jacobite" bishop, Mar Gregorios of Jerusalem came to India in 1664, confirmed the Episcopal consecration of Mar Thoma I as the head of the Orthodox Church in India. Thus began the formal relationship with the "Jacobite" Syrian Church, as it happened, in explicit support of the traditional autonomy of the Indian Church. History repeated itself in another form when the British in India encouraged reformation within the Orthodox Church, partly through Anglican domination of the theological seminary in Kottayam, besides attracting members of the church into Anglican congregations since 1836. Finally the reformist group broke away to form the Mar Thoma Church. This crisis situation was contained with the help of Patriarch Peter III of Antioch who visited India in 1875-77. The outcome was twofold; a reaffirmation of the distinctive identity of the Orthodox Church under its own Metropolitan and, at some dissonance with this renewal, an enlarged influence of the Patriarch of Antioch in the affairs of the Indian Church. Thus the relation ship which started for safeguarding the integrity and independence of the Orthodox Church, in India, against the misguided, if understandable, ambitions of the Roman Catholic and Anglican Protestant Churches, opened a long and tortuous chapter in which concord and conflict between the Indian and Syrian Orthodox Churches have continued to alternate, to this day. Three landmarks of recent history, however, lend hope that peace and unity might yet return to the Orthodox Community, driven rather unnaturally by divided loyalty. First, the relocation in India in 1912 of the Catholicate of the East originally in Selecuia and later in Tigris and the consecration of the first Indian Catholicos-Moran Mar Baselios Paulos- in Apostolic succession to St.Thomas, with the personal participation of Patriarch Abdul Messiah of Antiaoch. Second, the coming into force in 1934 of the Constitution of the Orthodox Church in India as an autocephalous Church linked to the Orthodox Syrian Church of the Patriarch of Antioch, and third the accord of 1958, by which Patriarch Ignatius Yakkoub III affirmed his acceptance of the Catholicos as well as the Constitution. More recently the verdict from the honourable Supreme court of India and the Malankara Assciation meeting held at Parumala on March, 2002 are historical events in the quest for lasting peace in the Orthodox Church of India. The fact that the Christian Church, first appeared in India, as elsewhere, as a fellowship of self-governing communities to the same body and born in the same new life, may yet light the path to a future of peace, within and beyond the Orthodox Community.