Thiruvananthapuram. Dr. Philipose Mar Chrysostom, one of the oldest religious leaders of the country, said goodbye to the world. He breathed his last at the age of 103 in a private hospital at Thiruvala in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala. Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has expressed condolences on the death of Dr. Chrysostom. He has described the demise of Dharmaguru as a great loss to the country. Doctor Chrysostom died at 1:30 pm on Wednesday night. The most senior metropolitan of the Malankara Mar Thoma Syrian Church was famous for his informative speeches. Born in the year 1918, Chrysostom celebrated his 103rd birthday on April 27. Chrysostome was often referred to as ‘Chiriyude Pithavu’. In Malayali, it meant the father of wisdom and knowledge.  Apart from this, he was also famous for his witty style. He always stood for the secular ideals of the country. He has always inspired people to be happy instead of complaining through his speeches and writing. In the year 2018, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan, the country’s third largest civilian award. In 2017, the church started the Navodaya campaign to celebrate his 100th birthday. The objective of this campaign was to work for the betterment of the transgender community and to bring them into the mainstream.

One of the oldest bishops of the country, he was made a priest in the year 1944. He became bishop in 1953. After this, in the year 1999, he was made the Metropolitan of the Marthoma Church. He held this post till his retirement in 2010. It is special that during his lifetime, Chrysostom was close to many big leaders of the country including former President KR Narayan and late Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

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