Youth Chaplain's Message




Dear Families of the Christos Mar Thoma Church, Philadelphia:

We have approached the final quarter of the year 2017. When looking back, we can remember the experiences we have had this year. Experiences of joy, sadness, confusion, anxiety. Some experiences were expected or unexpected. But we can take refuge and comfort that our Lord is the Lord of our lives and experiences. The Psalmist says: “The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my rock in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” (Psalm 18:2)

During the past month, we are aware about many of the natural calamities that took place, such as the hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Jose, Maria, and also earthquakes/tsunamis in Mexico, Japan, and in other parts of the world. Pope Francis has also spoken about the ongoing issue of climate change. I am very happy to know that our church has responded to the needs to the people. One of our parishes in Houston opened up its auditorium as a shelter for people in the local community. Understanding the community and responding to its needs is an extension of Christ’s witness. The recent happenings remind us about two things:

(1) The frailty of human life – Psalm 103: 14-15 says, “For he knows how we were made; he remembers that we are dust. As for mortals, their days are like grass; they flourish like a flower of the field…” We were created as human beings, who have a beginning and an end. God is the one who gave us life. Just as he gave, he has every right to take it away. This is affirmed in the life of Job. We need to use the time that we must fulfill God’s will and purpose in this world.

(2) Our divine responsibility to take care of the earth. Genesis 2:15 says, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it.” Everything human action can be followed by consequences long term or short term. Is our lifestyle eco-friendly? We need to develop a better lifestyle in order to ensure that the next generation can have a clean and safe planet to live in, and so that the sanctity of the land may be maintained. This is part of the responsibility given to us as affirmed in the scriptures.

May the blessings of God the Father, Son, & Holy Spirit, be with you all.


Dennis Achen (Youth Chaplain)