World ecclesial traditions are divided into three: Latin West, Greek West, Syriac East. Many identify the Western ecclesial tradition with the Latin tradition and the Eastern tradition with Greek West. The Syriac East is often forgotten. Scholars have tried to point out the reasons for the neglect of Syriac ecclesial tradition. The first reason proposed is connected to the Acts of the Apostles and Pauline letters. The acts were written in Greek for hellenic Christians and it does not show much interest in the Aramaic or Syriac speaking Churches. So too are the letters of Paul which, predominently are addressed to the gentile Christians and not to the Jewish Christians or the Christians of Syriac tradition. Later Christian authors also followed the same line.

Universally acclaimed Church historian Eusebius also neglected the Syriac ecclesial traditions. The ecclesial history written by Eusebius is concentrated on the Church of Roman empire. Early Syriac Christianity was developed in the East of Roman empire, i.e., the Persian empire and beyond. Roman and Persian empires were mostly at war with each other, particularly during Sassanian empire's reign. Therefore it is natural that Eusebius did not cover the ecclesial history of the Churches outside Roman empire. This trend has also been followed by later Church historians and it resulted in a Euro-centric history of Christianity.

There is no doubt that the Church of Mar Thoma Nasranis belong to Syriac East as from the time of its establishment by St Thomas the Apostle, Aramaic was it liturgical language. We have compiled a simple chart (we admit that it does not cover all Churches) that shows the position of ancient Church of Mar Thoma Nasrani Church within the Syriac East tradition (see below).



Before the division happened after the historical coonan cross oath, the Church of Mar Thoma Nasranis was united under its head Archdeacon, following the East Syriac tradition. The Church is now divided into many denominations due to historical reasons. Read the historical divisions chart that we have compiled for our subscribers.


Historical Divisions of Mar Thoma Nasranis

Timeline from 52 AD - 1490 AD Timeline from 16th century to present

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