St Marys Orthodox Church, Pune
Syrian Christian Community in Pune dates back to early forties. In the initial years, people belonging to various denominations, mainly Orthodox, Marthoma and CSI Churches, formed a combined congregation and conducted prayers and Holy Qurbana at St. Paul’s Church, Pune and All Saints Church, Kirkee. A priest belonging to one of the aforesaid denominations conducted prayers by rotation once in a month.
As the membership of Orthodox Syrian Christian Church increased, they decided to form a separate Parish. H. H. Baselios Geevarghese II, the then Catholicos and H. G. Thomas Mar Dionasius of Niranam came down to Pune, conducted Holy Qurbana and declared formation of Orthodox Syrian Church, Pune in December 1951.
As membership further increased, it was found extremely difficult for one Priest to manage the affairs of the Church and the necessity for a bifurcation was felt by members residing in Pune. The Parish was bifurcated on 16th October 1973 as St. Mary’s Orthodox Syrian Church, Pune and St. Thomas Orthodox Syrian Church, Kirkee by the Bombay Diocesan Metropolitan. The Pune Parish members continued their worship at St. Paul’s Church, Pune.
A plot of land measuring 12 guntas was purchased at Kondhwa during the vicar ship of Rev. Fr. C. V. Kuriakose in 1981. In the year 1983, a parsonage was also purchased at Nirmala Niwas in Pune Camp near M.G. Road. During 1987, a plot of land measuring 7 guntas was donated by one of our members, Mr. T. P. Alexander at Viman Nagar Area. Somehow, both these lands could not be used for construction of a Church
The present Church plot measuring 15 guntas at Ghorpadi was purchased in the year 1991 during the vicarship of Rev. Fr. Jacob Koshy. Funds were raised for purchase of land and construction of Church through mighty contributions and donations from members in and out of India, through coupon sale, publishing of two souvenirs, sale of the two plots and parsonage earlier mentioned.His Grace late lamented Dr Philipose Mar Theophilus, the then Diocesan Metropolitan assisted by His Grace Geevarghese Mar Coorilos laid the foundation stone for the present church on 2 February 1994. His Holiness Moran Mar Baselios Mar Thoma Mathews II, the then Catholicos of the East and Malankara Metropolitan consecrated the Church on 20th and 21st February 1998 assisted by His Grace Mar Osthatheos, Metropolitan of Niranam Diocese and His Grace Geevarghese Mar Coorilos, Metropolitan of Mumbai Diocese.With the tireless effort and commitment of the faithful members and with the blessed guidance of the leadership of the Church, our Parish continues to grow. Today, the Parish has membership of over 200 families. All spiritual organizations of the Malankara Orthodox Church, such as Sunday School, MGOCSM, Youth Movement, Martha Mariam Samajam and Prarthana Yogams (Area Prayer Groups) are active and flourishing in the Parish.