Kerala bishops ask priests to use Christian names

Thiruvananthapuram:(UCAN)  Many Kerala Christians have more than one name and the young generation prefers Indian or Sanskrit names.

The synod of Syro-Malabar bishops has asked priests and seminarians to use their Christian names as a “mark of their Christian identity”.

Father Paul Thelakkat, a senior priest, said the assembly of bishops last week discussed the issue of certain seminarians preferring non-Christian names. They said those shy of using their Christian names were not serious enough for a priesthood.

“A person is his name, so names are the primary mark of one’s identity. The priests have to use their Christian names, which is a mark of their Christian identity. The recommendation is to use the Christian names given at the time of baptism. The Synod directive is to use traditional Christian names as far as possible,” said Father Thelakkat said.

The Church spokesperson claimed that often many Christian girls and boys had more than one name — one name in the register of baptism, and another by which the child is usually known.

Adding that the confusion was not good, he said that many Christian names in Tamil were local and Christian at the same time. Interestingly, the Church directive comes at a time when many in the young generation of Catholic priests have started sporting Indian or Sanskrit names.

Source: Indian Express

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