Parumala is a sacred land that attracts pilgrims of every religion from every corner of India because of the presence of the Parumala Church.
Parumala is an island about 10 sq km long between Eramallikkara and Pannayi bridge. When Mar Gregorios assumed charge as Metropolitan of Niranam, he stayed at Parumala and taught deacons and began running the affairs of his diocese. A thatched shed owned by Arikupuram family was being used as a chapel. Mar Gregorios constructed a church and a seminary at Parumala. In 1895, Mar Gregorios consecrated the new church. It is dedicated in the name of St.Peter and St.Paul.
Saint Mar Gregorios of Parumala is the greatest saint the Malankara Orthodox Church has given birth to. Parumala Thirumeni was born on 15th June 1848 in ‘Chathuruthy’ house at Mulanthuruthy in Kerala. He began his formal education in the traditional village school. He was very intelligent and hardworking.
On 10th Dec 1876, Syrian patriarch Peter III consecrated Geevarghese Ramban as Metropolitan with the title ‘Gregorios’. Mar Gregorios was appointed to the Diocese of Niranam.
In those days casteism and untouchability were reigning supreme in society. However Parumala Thirumeni was convinced that all human beings were equal before God and that the light of the Gospel should be made available to these unfortunate people and their living conditions and social status must be improved. This vision was full in Parumala Thirumeni. He started a mission among the untouchables. He cared also for their education.
The holiness of his disciplined life, humility, fasting and prayer, the grace he earned through mortification, and the miracles that his presence or words wrought, were well acknowledged and appreciated by Christians and non Christians of his time.
Mar Gregorios died at Parumala on 2nd Nov 1902 and was canonized on 2nd Nov 1947, forty five years after his demise.
Parumala Thirumeni is a great beacon light of the church has been testified by the primates of the Church. Thirumeni’s influence on Malankara Church primates has been singular, while he was alive and also after his departure from this life.
Saint Mar Gregorios of Parumala is today the saint par excellence of all people belonging to all religions and his blessed memory will live for ever.