The advent of Orthodox Christians from Malankara (Kerala) to the Gulf began with the development of the Gulf countries. Bahrain at that time was the most developed country in the Gulf and it was the first country to commercially produce Oil in the 1950s. The first Orthodox Church established in the Gulf was St. Mary’s Orthodox Church, Bahrain.

With the finding of oil in the Emirates of Abu Dhabi and Dubai, people from many countries of the sub-continent started coming to these places in search of job opportunities. Among them were many Orthodox Christians from Kerala, who were employed in Government and Private organizations. They formed prayer groups for their spiritual needs and were frequently visited by the Vicars from St.Mary’s Orthodox Church, Bahrain. St. George Orthodox Church, Abu Dhabi and St. Thomas Orthodox Church, Dubai, were the early congregations to be established in the UAE under the patronage of St.Mary’s Orthodox Church, Bahrain.

In 1970, at the time of elevation of St. Thomas Orthodox Church in Dubai as a Parish, a large number of its members lived in Sharjah. Their travel to Dubai for attending the Holy Mass at Women’s Society Hall in Dubai was a great ordeal. So, in the year 1973, a group of the Orthodox Church members from Sharjah formed a Prayer Group, under the patronage of St.Thomas Orthodox Church, Dubai. Prayer meetings were held once in a month, at the residence of those members, under the leadership of the Vicar from Dubai Church. This prayer group was the forerunner for the formation of the present St. Gregorios Orthodox Church in Sharjah.



The Managing Committee

The administration of the Parish is being conducted by a Managing Committee, elected by the General Body, from among the members, as per the Constitution of the Malanakara Orthodox Church. The tenure of the office is for a period of one year. The Vicar of the Parish is the President of the Managing Committee.The day-to-day admisnistration is carried out by the Hon. Secretary and the Hon.Trustee assisted by the Managing committee members representing various areas of Sharjah.

Group Life Insurance Scheme members of the parish

In 1999, our parish launched a unique scheme, in assocoiation with the New India Insurance Company, for the welfare of the members. It is the first in the history of the Malanakara Orthodox Church for members of a parish, where accident & natural death coverage Dhs.50, 000.00 and Dhs.25, 000.00 respectively is being given.

Centenary Celebration of the Holy Demise of St. Gregorios of Parumala
(1902 to 2002)

Our Parish celebrated the Centenary of the Holy Demise of our Patron Saint, Parumala Thirumeni from November 1, 2001 to October 31, 2002. As part of the yearlong celebrations various seminars and conventions were conducted in association with the spiritual organizations of the parish. To commemmorate the event, Gold coins depicting the portrait of Parumala Thirumeni was brought-out for the devotees

St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, Sharjah Celebrates Silver Jubilee (1978 - 2003)
by supporting various humanitarian projects in India

St. Gregorios Orthodox Church Sharjah, in commemoration of the Silver Jubilee Celebrations in 2003, is carrying out a number of humanitarian and developmental projects.

Shantigram is a Project of the Delhi Diocese, of the Malankara Orthodox Church in India, for community renewal and revival of the multi-religious society of Mandavar village in Haryana, India. The objectives of the project are to establish basic education, community health and economic security for the low-income people of the surrounding villages. St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, Sharjah is supporting the project by financing the constructin of the Administratve Block at Shanthigram.

Housing Scheme in various parts of Kerala for 25 poor and unpriveileged families are fast nearing completion. His Holiness.Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Mathews II will hand over the key to the beneficiaries on August 15, 2003 at Parumala Church.

Matrimonial Blessings: Women from 25 poor and underprivileged families will be married-off and the couples will be blessed by His Holiness.Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Mathews II on August 15, 2003 at Parumala Church.

Self-employment Scheme: Distributing 100 sewing machines for widows and handicapped women, in Commemoration of the Centenary of the Holy Demise of St. Gregorios, our patron Saint. Machines will be distributed on August 15, 2003 at Parumala Church.


Charity Activities

“One man gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.”
Proverb 11: 24-25

St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, Sharjah, eversince it’s establishment in 1978, has been giving importance to helping the poor and the needy. To quote from the managing committee’s Annual report for the year 1978, “The Parish opened a generous hand towards the fund declared by the Malankara Orthodox Church for the cyclone-hit, poverty-sticken state of Andhra Pradesh in India, during 1978. Collections were were made from members of the Parish and an amount of Indian Rupees 7500.00 was sent to H.G. Geevarghese Mar Osthathios, the Metropolitan in Charge of the relief activities.” A notable event during 1979 was the establishment of a Charity Committee - MGOC Charity Committee, to look after the charity activities of the Parish, a unique among Malankara Orthodox Parishes all over the world. Even today, St. Gregorios Orthodox Church, Sharjah stands-out as a great provider for the needy.

“But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”
Matthew 6:1-4


The Charity activity of the Parish at present amounts to 1.5 Million Indian Rupees, distributed among the poor and the needy. The fund is raised from among the generous members of the Church and through fund raising programs as below.

* Birthday and Wedding anniversary donations - Members contribution during the Birthday and Wedding anniversary

* Self-denial fund - Members contibute by fasting during the 50 day lent and contibute an amount towards charity.

* Blood donation camps - Conducting blood donation camps among members of the community.

* Tin collection - Each household is given a coin-tin for contribution towards charity on a daily basis and collected once in a year.

* Education Sponsorship - One can sponsor a deserving student by paying Dhs.100.00 towards the educationl expense for one year.

* General donations - General donations received from among the members of the community towards charity.


“If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.”
I John 3:17-18



SGOC Charity committee, consisting of 15 members presided by the Vicar, scrutinizes each application and decides the quantum of aid to be given to each applicant.



* Medical assistance : About 33 % of the total charity budget is earmarked for assitance to applicants seeking aid for medical treatment.

* Educational assistance : Given for outstanding students from School level to Higher education and to various job-oriented courses.

* Marriage assistance : Poor and deserving parents are given aid to meet part of the marriage expense of their daughters.

* Housing assistance : Assistance is given for consruction of houses.

* General assistance : General assistance given as local aid to people in distress.



More quotes from the Holy Bible about giving

“But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous."
Luke 14:13-14

“In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: "It is more blessed to give than to receive."
Acts 20:35

“ For riches do not endure forever, and a crown is not secure for all generations.”
Proverbs 27:24

“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver”
II Corinthians 9:7

“Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.”
Matthew 10:8

Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless.”
Ecclesiastes 5:10

“Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.”
Hebrews 13:2



Church renevated and consecrated on 5th November 2010

























Milestones in the History of the Parish

Year

Major Events

1973 
Formation of St. Thomas Syrian Prayer Group, Sharjah 

1978

Establishment of St. Gregorios Orthodox Church.

1978

Inaugurated the activities of the Youth Movement and Martha Mariam VanithaSamajam

1979

Charity Committee formed

1979

Gregorian Magazine started

1979

Sunday School activities inaugurated

1979

Choir organized

1980

Parish Bye-Law passed as a guidance to carry out the spiritual and administrative functions of Parish

1980

St. Thomas Library inaugurated

1981

Sharjah Ecumenical Church dedication

1981

First Edition of Parish Directory

1985

Parish By-Law revised

1988

10th Anniversary celebrated

1989

DivyaBodhanam Classes Inaugurated

1990

Second Edition of Parish Directory

1992

Parish By-Law revised

1993

Third Edition of Parish Directory

1993

H. H Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, allocates Plot of Land as a Gift for the Church Building at Al Yarmook Area.

1994 

Laying of the foundation stone of the Church by Late H.G. Dr. Paulos Mar Gregorios

1995

Consecration of the Church by Late H. H. Moran Mar BaseliosMarthoma Mathews II Catholicos assisted by Late H.G. Job Mar Philoxenos, Late H. G. Philipose Mar Eusebius and H. G Paulose Mar Militheus.

1995

Relocated the Holy Relics of ParumalaThirumeni old Parsonage to Church 17th November

1996

Flag Pole erected

1996

Visa Facility granted

1996

MGOCSM formed

1997

Fourth edition of Parish Directory

1997

Foundation Stone Laid for Parsonage & Parish Hall

1998

Parish Bye Law revised

1998

Inauguration of Dr. Paulos Mar Gregorios Memorial Hall

1998

Holy Saints name given to area prayer groups

1999

Group Life Insurance Scheme for Parish members commenced

2000

Fifth Edition of Parish Directory with members photo

2001 

Centenary Celebrations of ParumalaThirumeni

2001 

Church Accounts Computerized

2001 

Election rules and Procedures introduced

2002

Website of the Church launched with web address www.gulfparumala.com

2002

Gold Coin released on the occasion of Centenary Celebrations of ParumalaThirumeni

2002

The ‘Land Allocation Certificate’ in our Church’s name received  from Sharjah Municipality

2003

Silver Jubilee of the Parish celebrated with yearlong colorful events.

2003

The Church honouredSabhakaviShri. C.P. Chandi during the public meeting of the  Silver Jubilee Celebration’s ‘KudumbhaSangamam’ at Parumala

2004

Parish Bye-law was revised.

2006

Started evening Holy Mass services on second and fourth Fridays of the month.

2006

Introduced Wednesday fasting Prayer.

2006

Licence for our church from the Municipality received.

2006

Sixth Edition of Parish Directory published.

2006

MGOCSM Unit celebrated its 10th Anniversary

 2007

Members Welfare Scheme introduced.

2007

Relocated the Holy Relics of ParumalaThirumeni to a more convenient place within the chancel of the Church.

2007

Our Parish hosted OCYM & MOMS UAE Zonal conference

2008

Our Parish took over the complete financial commitment of the construction of St. Thomas Orthodox Church, Kanjikkuzhy, Idukki Diocese.

2009

Holy Qurbana Service began in UAQ area.

2009

Seventh  edition of Parish Directory published.

2009

Our Parish was declared as “MarubhumiyileParumala (Parumala of Gulf)” by the Holy Synod  of the Church.

2009

Consecration of the renovated Church was held

2009

The Church honouredfamous South Indian play back singer Sri. K.G. Markose at the public meeting held on the occasion of Consecration of the renovated Church

2010

Parish Bye-law was revised

2010

Our Parish took over the complete financial commitment of the construction of St. Thomas Catholicate Centre, Kamplikandam, Ankamally Diocese

2011 

As part of the Centenary celebrations of the re-establishment of Catholicate of the East in India  our parish have under-taken a commemorative Charity Project by sponsoring and extend financial assistance towards the construction of the Intensive Care Unit Block at the St. Gregorios International Cancer Care Centre at Parumala.

2011 

Introduced Medical Assistance Scheme for members

2012

Our Parish took over the complete financial commitment of the construction of St. George Orthodox Church, Karuvarakkundu, Malabar Diocese

2012

Centenary of the re-establishment of Catholicate of East in India was celebrated by the Parish with yearlong various programs.

2012

The Church honoured with “Gregorian Honour” Mrs. MariammaVarkey an educator, Captain Raju a veteran artist of Malayalam cinema, Mr. Soman Baby a Journalist

2012

Our Parish hosted OCYM UAE Zonal conference.

2012

Introduced H. G Job Mar Philoxenos Educational Award and Endowment.

2012

Introduced H. G Job Mar Philoxenos Kidney Foundation Aid under the auspices of St. Gregorios Orthodox Charity Committee.

2013

First Assistant Vicar for the Parish was appointed

2013

First permanent Security for the Parish was appointed

2013

Our Parish hosted OCYM & MOMS Gulf Orthodox Family Conference.

2013

As part of the help to undeveloped Diocese, our parish have under-taken by sponsoring and extend financial assistance up to a maximum of Indian Rupees 50 Lakhs towards the construction of the Chapel at the diocesan center Kottarakkara - Punaloor.

2014

8th edition of Parish Directory published.

2015

Parish Bye-law was revised.

2015

OVBS Silver Jubilee celebration ( 25th Year ).

2015

MOHE formed.

2016

First permanent accountant for the Parish was appointed.

2016

MGOCSM 20th Year Celebration.



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