Liturgy and Symbolism: Syriac Perspective
Baby Varghese is professor of Syriac studies, liturgy, and sacramental theology at Orthodox Theological Seminary, Kottayam, in Kerala, India. He is also professor of Syriac studies at St. Ephrem’s Ecumenical Research Institute, and a research guide in Syriac studies at Mahatma Gandhi University, both in Kerala. He holds a Ph.D. in religious studies from the Sorbonne, as well as doctorate of theology from the Catholic University of Paris. His research focuses on the ecclesiology and history of Syriac Christianity, the Syrian Orthodox Church and its two major liturgical traditions, Tur Abdin in South Eastern Turkey and Mosul/Tikrit in Iraq (popularly known as the Western and Eastern traditions, respectively). During his fellowship year, he will explore the historical development of the Syrian Orthodox liturgy and the processes of enculturation and contextualization that began in the fourth century in both Antioch and Mesopotamia. Of particular interest are the content and style of liturgical texts composed in various cultural milieus and their impact on liturgical music, art, and architecture.