Archbishop Elanjikal succumbs in hospital
By Ashraf Padanna/Thiruvananthapuram
Archbishop Dr Cornelius Elanjikal
Archbishop Dr Cornelius Elanjikal, known for his tremendous
contributions to the Malayalam church music, died yesterday aged 93.
Church sources said the end came at 7.30am in the Lourdes Hospital in
Kochi where he was admitted on Friday. The archbishop was indisposed
for sometime and was undergoing treatment for lung infection.
He was the archbishop of Verapoly Archdiocese from 1987 until his
resignation in 1996 making way for Dr Archbishop Daniel
Acharuparambil, who died two years back. He had also served as the
President of Kerala Catholic Bishops' Council (KCBC).
The archbishop had written some 500 devotional songs which are widely
in use for worship services across Kerala and the Keralite churches
His deep knowledge in Hindu philosophy and Vedas are also widely acknowledged.
The author of ten books, he had PhDs in philosophy, canon law and the
He initiated several welfare programs for the Dalits and the
downtrodden living in the coastal areas of the region. He's living in
the special home of the archdiocese at Chembumukku in Kochi.
Several leaders, including Defence Minister A K Antony and Kerala
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy expressed grief over the death of the
"He may be no more but his songs will linger on for many more years in
our homes and places of worship," said federal food minister Prof K V
His body will lay in state at St Francis Cathedral and later at St
Alberts College for the public to pay their last respects before taken
back to the cathedral for funeral services at 3pm. The mortal remains
will be interred at the church's cemetery.
Elanjikal was born to Kunjuvira and Thresya on September 8, 1918, at
Kara near Kodungalloor and was ordained a priest in the Roman Catholic
Church after his studies on March 18, 1945.
He was appointed to the Diocese of Vijayapuram on January 16, 1971,
and was ordained a bishop on April 4, 1971. Elanjikal was appointed to
the Diocese of Verapoly on January 26, 1987 and retired on June 14,
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