In a first for the Maramon Convention in Kerala, billed as one of the largest Christian conventions in Asia, women will be allowed to attend the evening session.
To facilitate the participation of women at the annual convention, which will be held from February 10 to 17 in Pathanamthitta district, the timing of the sessions has been changed. The evening session of the convention will be held from 5 pm to 6.30 pm, instead of the earlier 6.30 pm to 8.30 pm.
Maramon convention is being conducted by the Malankara Mar Thoma Syrian Church, a prominent non-Catholic segment in Kerala. The event will be held on the banks of Pamba river.
The demand for women’s entry at the most important evening sessions have been raised by various quarters within the Church in recent years. But the Church had summarily rejected that demand. The decision allowing women’s entry to the convention was announced by Church head Bishop Joseph Mar Thomas on Saturday.
In a circular issued to the Church members, the Bishop said that arrangements for women’s participation were made in the backdrop of the situation prevailing in the political and religious arena of the state. The convention has always upheld renaissance values, and worked for women empowerment and gender equality, it added.
Mar Thoma Church secretary Rev K J George said the timing of the convention was changed to allow women’s entry. “This is the first time that women will attend the evening session,” said the secretary.