Though the first convention began in 1895, the sermons were delivered to the tens of thousands of church members who attended in a very unique manner. Until 1936, messages of the main speaker were repeated in relay by designated people standing in between the participants of the convention. It was a time consuming process for the message from the front to pass through thousands of participants to reach the back of the audience. In 1936, a loud speaker and mike (microphone) set was brought to Maramon from USA by the famous missionary Rev. Dr. E. Stanley Jones. It was donated by one of the Christian Churches in USA. He was a well wisher of the Mar Thoma Church and encouraged the missionary zeal of the Church.
Read more and see more rare photos at 1921 -1970: World renowned missionary Dr. E. Stanley Jones at Maramon Convention ( See Rare Photos) Hear a sermon by Dr. E. Stanley Jones – Click Here (The sermon is 26 min. — or download the mp3 (11.8 MB).) The sermon title is, “The Gift of the Holy Spirit: The Birthright of All Christians.” The sermon was preached at a U.S. Ashram in August 1960. (This sermon is included in the 2008 book, Living Upon the Way: Selected Sermons of E. Stanley Jones on Self-Surrender and Conversion.) This audio clip is from www.methodistthinker.com
9 November, 1964: Mrs. Kandamma Varghese (of Mar Thoma Sevika Sanghom) passes away.
“The Mar Thoma Suvisesha Sevika Sanghom owes much to the self sacrificing work of Mrs. Kandamma Varghese who worked untiringly as the Organizing Secretary for over 20 years, traveling far and wide, organizing branches in the parishes, doing evangelistic work among Christians and non Christians, and building up the work in parishes.” ~ The Mar Thoma Church, Heritage and Mission – Alexander Mar Thoma Metropolitan.
Mrs. Kandamma was a modest person in wearing jewellery. She used to request people who had more than one gold chain to donate the second one for gospel work. Due to Kandamma’s loving approach to the wife of Diwan Bhadur Dr. V. Varghese sold her ornaments and donated the money for the construction of the Salem Orphanage in Tiruvalla.
Kandamma spent her final days in Perumbavoor with her son Mr. C. V. Koshy who was the headmaster of the Ashram High school there. When she died on 9 Nov, 1964, at the age of 88, she left behind a glowing legacy of her work in Kerala.
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On the morning of 2 November 1942 a huge crowd under the leadership of the Bishop Juhanon Mar Timotheos gathered under a tree on the eastern side of the Kottarakkara railway Station and gave a sensational send off to Rev. K.T. Thomas, Karimparampil.Anaprampal), Mr. John Varghese (Valethu Thoppil, Puthencauv), and Mr. M. P. Mathew (Mavelil, Kaviyoor), the founder members of the Christa Panthi Ashram.
After visiting various north Indian cities, they finally reached Sihora on 13 September 1943 and started the Ashram. Our bishop The Late Rt. Rev .Easow Mar Timotheos was a memberof this ashram for 22 years.
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Sadhu Sunder Singh the renowned Indian Christian missionary was a member of an ancient, aristocratic, and wealthy Sikh family from the village of Rampur in the State of Patiala (present day Punjab). He was a very religious and God fearing person. Jesus appeared to him in a vision in the early hours of 18th December 1904. Like Paul in the New Testament, he heard a voice “Why do you persecute me? Remember that I gave my life for you upon the Cross”. On Sunday, the 3rd of September, 1905, on his sixteenth birthday, he was baptized in St. Thomas Church at Shimla according to the rite of the Anglican Church.
A month after his baptism, Sundar Singh donned the yellow linen robe that celibate Indian Sadhus wore and set out to preach the gospel, carrying nothing but a New Testament. From now on he would have no permanent home and no income.”I am not worthy to follow in the steps of my Lord,” he said, “but like Him, I want no home, no possessions. Like Him I will belong to the road, sharing the suffering of my people, eating with those who will give me shelter, and telling all people of the love of God.’ He also authored eight books.
Sadhu Sunder Singh was one of the speakers of the Maramon Convention in 1918. He spoke in Hindi and the translation was done by Mr. M. O. Oommen, Chief Conservator of the then Travancore Kingdom.
Sadhu Sunder Singh drew crowds greater than any previous conventions, so much so that before the end of the week the pandal (covered area) had to be enlarged. It is estimated at the final meeting about 32,000 people gathered to hear his message.
He is believed to have died in the foothills of the Himalayas in 1929 on his way to Tibet. His body was never found.
Journey to the Sky – Sadhu Sundar Singh (1977)
6 July, 1944: Titus Mar Thoma II passes away. He was born in 1866, consecrated as the bishop on 9 December 1898 and Metropolitan on 5 Nov.1909. He was called to eternal rest on 6th July 1944 and buried the following day at the Bishops’ cemetery in the SCS Compound, Tiruvalla. During his long tenure as the Metropolitan, he consecrated three bishops.
A large number of our church buildings were constructed during his time. Many organizations like Mar Thoma Theological Seminary, Mar Thoma Students Conference, Teachers-Students Fellowship, Mar Thoma Evangelistic Association (1888), Maramon Convention (1895), Mar Thoma Sunday School Samjam (1905), Mar Thoma Suvisesha Sevika Sanghom (1919), Mar Thoma Voluntary Evangelists’ Association (1924), Mar Thoma Yuvajana Sakhyam (1933), were started during his time.
in addition he also promoted education with the opening of: S.C. Seminary School, Tiruvalla (1902), Kozhencherry School (1904), Maramon School (1918, Kottayam Theological College (1923) Tiruvalla S.C. Training School (1925).
Titus II Metropolitan was also known to have taken the initiative to translate many of the prayer books into Malayalam.
18 June 1986: Death of Mrs. Mariamma (Pennamma) Joseph (b.31 March 1917), Co-founder of the Hoskote Mission, Bangalore District, Karnataka, India. Mariamma was the daughter of Mammen Mammen and Mariamma of Manalukalayil, Kumbanad. She did her Teacher’s Training Course (TTC) from Peringara School near Tiruvalla, after which she taught in many schools including Arrangatu School, Pullad, Perumbara (Kuriannoor) School near Charal Mount; Kanjeettukara and Nedumprayar (Maramon).
She was trained by the CMS Missionary, Miss Kellaway (Australia) of Vanitha Mandiram, Tiruvalla. Pennamma was greatly influenced through her life and testimony of this missionary. She had an earnest desire to go for mission work in Karnataka but her parents did not allow it (according to the then prevalent customs/ norms, Syrian Christian parents were not willing to send their unmarried daughters to unknown ‘foreign’ lands) until her marriage.
However, her marriage with Mr. M.T. Joseph, (Manon House, Maramon) was a definite fulfillment of God’s call at the Maramon Convention (1947). who had a similar call and vision to Karnataka. In obedience to this heavenly call, she resigned her Government teacher’s job, that had a permanent income, to an uncertain and unknown future. This journey led to the humble beginnings of the Hoskote Mission. She was called home on 18 June 1986 and buried in the Mission Cemetery in Ghonakhanahally, 7 km away from the Hoskote mission field.
Mariamma has finished her race and now she is with the Lord. The harvest is plenty, but the workers are few. We need more and more persons like Mariamma to work for the Lord. Millions of villagers are there who have never heard about our Saviour even once in their lives. Who will go???
To read a more detailed biography of Mr. & Mrs. M.T.Joseph Please click.
18 April, 1929: Sadhu Sunder Singh (b.3 Sep 1889) disappears on his way to Tibet. The mystery of the disappearance of Sadhu Sunder Singh after leaving Sabathu-near Tibet on 18th April 1929 has never been solved. The route he was to have taken was one he had often traveled before. Reports of his disappearance appeared in newspapers all over the world.
No one knows what happened to him and how he died. By whatever means God took His servant home, He evidently did not intend it to be known. Sunder manifested into his life the verse written in Mark 8:35 which says, “For whoever wants to save his own life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for me and for the Gospel will save it.”
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At present, Maramon Convention messages (full text) are printed and sold on the next day morning from counters for the convention attendees. This enables people to take home the sermons of the previous day and read them again and share the sermons with people who were not able to attend the convention. These printed sermons are also shared in cottage prayer fellowships, parish prayer groups and for personal prayer and meditation.
However, few people know that this practice started in 1905. There were no microphones and speakers. The convention messages were repeated in relay by three persons – at times four or more – standing in different places of the pandal to make it audible to the thousands of people who attended. This relay process took a long time and was tedious for the audiences. The printing of messages in 1905 became a real blessing for all and continues to be so today. Today, God has blessed the Church members with technology which enables them to watch the Convention live through web streaming and receive updates on emails and websites.
Given below is the report about this, from the Thomas Walker’s biography.
“1905 Wednesday, February 22. I awoke feeling very weary, for the heat was extraordinarily oppressive, and seemed to take all the life out of one. The Syrian brethren made one very good
arrangement this year. Each day’s addresses wore printed by night at their printing press at Tiruwella, eight miles away, and were on sale the next day in a booth near the pandal. Thus
the printed pages supplemented the speaker’s voice, and carried the message far and wide.”
~ Rev. Thomas Walker was one of the main speakers at the Maramon Convention from 1898 to 1912. He was a Church Missionary Society (CMS) missionary from Tirunelveli. He emphasized the importance on studying the Word of God (Bible) and to promote the missionary work of the Mar Thoma Syrian Church.