The use of wine at churches for Mass has come to the liquor controversy after prominent backward Hindu leader Vellappally Nateshan questioned the logic of allowing Mass wine when Indian made foreign liquor is banned in a phased manner.
Chrysostom said it was not necessary for wine to be used for Mass. “Churches should rethink about using grape water, as had been the practice in the past, instead of wine. At the same, I would not agree with those who had raised the issue on both sides,” said the bishop.
Reacting to the non-Catholic prelate’s suggestion, Catholic Church spokesman Fr Paul Thelakkattu said Chrysostom’s opinion was not acceptable. Using wine at Mass is a global practice. Not even an ounce is used for a mass, he said.
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Meanwhile, raising the bar on the licence given to various dioceses to make wine, Nateshan said the Church in Kerala is running 24 distilleries. “Jesus turned water into wine.