Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2022

Unity Octave (Week of Prayer for Christian Unity) is a joint global initiative of the Commission on Faith and Order of the World Council of Churches and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. In India, NCCI joins with all Episcopal and Confessional traditions in coming together to observe the Unity Octave and to pray for Christian Unity. Policy, Governance and Public Witness department of NCCI is coordinating the Unity Octave observance this year.
The theme for this year’s Unity Octave is
‘We saw the star in the East, and we came to worship him”  (Mt 2:2)

This year also we are not printing booklets instead we are giving the link to worship orders in PDF format so that it can either be projected or be copied and distributed according to your own convenience. The available translation in different languages are also given. We are grateful to Rev Vijayesh Lal, the General Secretary of Evangelical Fellowship of India (EFI) and to the secretaries of Kerala Council of Churches and and Tamil Nadu Christian Council for the translations in vernacular languages You are also free to contextualize this liturgy considering the needs of your local context. We strongly encourage all our constituents to observe unity octave along with members of other Christian denominations and be part of the World Christian Community initiative to have ecumenical expressions through worship.

Download liturgies – English | Hindi | Tamil | Malayalam | Marathi | Punjabi 

With Prayers,

Rev Dr. Asir Ebenezer,
General Secretary, NCCI.

Telling the stories of christs and christmases of our times ….

Sparked by the sheep-farmers’ vision of the birth of a new age, and affirmed by the wisdom from the ‘east’, the message of ‘christ-revolution’ comes to us in the birth of the Jesus movement for over 2020 years.

During these 2000 years and more we have also had many such stories – of events and people that have changed history. There have been significant stories in India and outside that have changed the course of debilitating histories and channelled to life.

The movement to abolish trading in human persons for slavery, the uprisings to free people of colour into the mainstream, the many movements to independence and self-governance, birth of the Dravidian movements and that of Neo-Buddhism against the practice of the perpetuation of caste, nationalisation of public assets and services of common good, the upper cloth movement, the abolition of sati, right down to the victory of the farmers over the farm laws, are only some of the many shining examples of christmases of our times that brought good news, new life and hope to many.

History abounds with stories of liberators who have to be celebrated. There are also many such people that are branded and banished – all because of their professed conviction and stand on the side of the excluded and against perpetuation of hegemonic oppressive structures for organised individual and corporate loot of public wealth and resources.

This Christmas, even as we celebrate Jesus the Christ, let us remember, acknowledge and celebrate the christs and christmases of our times in order that we and our posterity will have contemporaneous memories to cherish and the power to create moments of celebration of life  – the life that is made vulnerable and laid bare by the ongoing pandemic of our times.

Wish you a meaningful and memorable Christmastide. Let Hope prevail in us through every day of the New Year both through the pandemic and beyond.


Rev. Asir Ebenezer
General Secretary, NCCI

Call for applications to the post of NCCI Executive Secretary – NCCI Youth Concerns Ministry

National Council of Churches in India

Call for Applications


Applications are invited from interested candidates to serve as Executive Secretary NCCI Youth Concerns.

The candidate must belong to a Member Church of NCCI and should have a commitment to Youth concerns. The appointment will be for a term of five years beginning from 3rd January 2022.


  • A minimum of a Bachelors degree.
  • Should also have a basic Theological Degree (Senate of Serampore College B.D. or its equivalent).
  • Should have a good command in English language – both spoken and written
  • Should be between 25-30 years of age and should have a national ecumenical exposure.
  • Should be endorsed and recommended by the Head of the NCCI Constituent Church of which the candidate is a member.
  • Should have a rich experience of working among youth groups.
  • Should be creative, innovative and communicative.
  • Should have an experience of working in an IT-enabled environment.
  • Should be willing to relocate to Delhi

 Interested candidates may apply with their curriculum vitae including necessary enclosures, endorsement from the head of the NCCI Member Church, and a photograph (with an advance copy by email) to:

The General Secretary
National Council of Churches in India
Post Box 205, Civil Lines
Beside Maharashtra State Biodiversity Board,
Nagpur 440 001, Maharashtra State
Phone:  (0712) 2531312 / 2561464
Email:  ncci@ncci1914.com


Last date for receiving application by post/ courier is 7th December 2021.

Short listed candidates will be intimated about the date and time of the interview.

Download pdf file

Rev. Dr. Asir Ebenezer
General Secretary

 Date: November 25, 2021


Orange the World: END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN NOW! 16 Days of Activism


Dear Ecumenical Partners,

Greetings from the NCCI Women’s Concerns!

One of the annual observances of the NCCI Women’s Concerns is in joining the ‘16 Days of Activism against Gender-based violence’ from the 25th of November (International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women) to the 10th of December (International Human Rights Day). This period also includes observance of some other important days like – November 29 (International Women Human Rights Defenders Day), December 1 (World AIDS Day) and December 6 (Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre).

The 16 Days Campaign is an organizing strategy for individuals and groups around the world to call for the elimination of all forms of gender-based violence against women and to:

  1. Raise awareness about gender-based  violence  against women as a human rights issue at the local, national, regional, and international levels
  2. Strengthen local work around gender-based violence against women
  3. Establish a clear link between local and international work to end gender-based violence against women
  4. Provide a forum in which organizers can develop and share new and effective strategies
  5. Demonstrate the solidarity of women around the world organizing against gender-based violence against women
  6. Create tools to pressure governments to implement commitments to eliminate gender-based violence against women

The theme for this year is “Stand against Violence”. Let me encourage you to take this opportunity to talk about the adversities that are done under the banner of Rape. Rape is not just physical it’s mental and emotional. “It’s an act of violence to say I Can do whatever I want with you and your body”. Female Foeticide is a murder committed by us when we do not want to have baby girls in our family. In today’s time, we don’t want to acknowledge it in our homes/churches/society. But it exists. Let’s

create a safe space for our daughters, sisters, and us as well to enjoy a life that God has given to us without fear and stigma.

“Recent women-led movements such as #NiUnaMenos and #MeToo have indeed helped break the long silence surrounding sexual harassment in the world of work on a global scale and forced a conversation about the need to fundamentally transform the power structures and discriminatory norms that enable gender-based violence and discrimination.

As National Council of Churches in India, it is our responsibility to encourage each other – member churches/ councils/ organizations and agencies to join in the observation of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence and work on a just inclusive environment for the wholesome growth of all. It is time again this year to unite and create awareness for ending violence against women in our country/churches/ homes

The material for observance of these days as a means to equip yourselves how and what can be done is attached as attachment. The material can be contextualized as required.  For any  clarification   and   assistance   please   feel   free   to   email   me  at jyoti@ncci1914.com. You may like to share with us how this campaign was meaningful for you and your people. Pictures and testimonials can also be sent for sharing with others and for mutual encouragement.

Please  share  this  information to all   relevant person / people in your organization/ agency so that they can get this done and be connected with us.

Download here: Concept note, 16 Days of Activism Toolkit

Thanking you Yours sincerely

Rev Jyoti S Singh Pillai
Executive Secretary
Women Concern, NCCI

Dalit Liberation Sunday 2021

Respected ecumenical leaders and dear friends.

Greetings from NCCI – Dalit and Tribal/ Adivasi Concerns!

Dalit Liberation Sunday has become an important feature in the calendar of Indian Churches and Ecumenical movements. Over the years, there has been a positive response in sensitizing the local congregations towards concerns of Dalits, for no longer caste issue is visualized as a sociological issue or an issue outside the purview of church but more seen as an issue challenging the core of our faith and gospel. Thanks to the enormous support received from across the churches, dioceses, parishes and theological institutions in observing this special Sunday.

We are happy to inform you that the Dalit Liberation Sunday will be observed on 14th November 2021 all over India by the Member Churches/ Institutions of the National Council of Churches in India and Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India. The theme for this year’s DLS is God says No to caste discrimination (Acts 10:28).  Let us as local congregation observe this DLS-2021 in all sincerity and truthfulness to our calling as Christians and sensitize our people to overcome all forms of discriminatory practices of caste across India and initiate uncompromising actions to eradicate such practices in society and thus also within the Christian community.

We are sending you some prayers and affirmations to be included into your worship service. Attached herewith please find the Poster and Order of Worship pdf. File which you may circulate among your pastors, lay leaders and department heads.

Looking forward to receiving your cooperation in observing Dalit Liberation Sunday on November 14, 2021.

Thanking you in anticipation,

With regards,

In Christ,

Pradip Bansrior
Executive Secretary
Dalit and Tribal/ Adivasi Concerns
National Council of Churches in India

Declaration of the National Council of Churches in India on COP26

Declaration from National Council of Churches in India To the 26th Session of the Conference of Parties (COP26) Of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Scheduled to open on 31st October 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland, UK

The National Council of Churches in India (NCCI), the National Ecumenical expression of 76 constituents including protestant and orthodox confessions and several national organizations discern in unity “to strongly proclaim our deep-rooted faith in caring and nurturing our common household – God’s Earth as fundamental Christian obligation” and thus release the following Declaration to the delegates, faith communities, world leaders and other stakeholders.

It is with profound grief and responsibility we recognize that

  • The earth is overburdened and overloaded with greedy life style, a society driven by corporate centered economy and growing disparity.
  • Soil, water, air, forest, mountain, animal is slowly dying and in extinction due to heavy exploitation and irresponsible behavior.
  • Adivasi, Tribals and such other Indigenous Communities and forest dwellers who have been nature care takers are displaced and exploited in the name of development and
  • Climate change consequences have its worse impacts on poorest countries and communities at the bottom.

We critically demand and urge urgent and responsible actions to be taken at COP26 in the following area

  • Renewed commitment to reduce CO2 emissions.
  • Ensuring life and livelihood of the Adivasi, Tribal and such other Indigenous communities, as well as communities at climate risk through adequate compensation for recreation.
  • Stop climate change migration and minimize mining projects that harms forest, water, air and soil and largely affect forest communities.
  • Call upon decision makers for urgent action to prevent the loss and damage caused by climate change; especially less rain fall, unseasonal rain and regular cyclones are the disastrous outcome of human made climate change.
  • The developed nations must minimize carbon pressure on poorest countries; design alternative sustainable model of energy production; Adopt zero emission and green economy as high priority in contrast to consumption of fossil fuel.

We as faith community uphold all contributors and actors in prayer and commit for the following actions

  • We place life over life style.
  • We pray, meditate and reflect upon God’s commandment to recreate and restore God’s creation and care for other human being.
  • We as churches in India pledge to turn all our churches into Green Churches by 2030 by being energy efficient and plastic free.
  • We will advocate for climate justice and climate resilient society by urging government, corporate and global leaders.
  • Network for a better and sustainable future for next generations.
  • We put continuous pressure for accountability.

We offer hope and peace to the world and commit to work together for a healthy and sustainable future for all.

Drafted by:
Mr. Angelious Michael
Dr. Mathew Koshy Punnackadu Ms. Renemsongla Ozukum
Rev.A Joshuva Peter (Treasurer NCCI),
Mr. Pradip Bansrior (Executive Secretary, NCCI Dalit and Tribal/ Adivasi Concerns),
NCCI Working Group on Ecological Justice


Rev. Asir Ebenezer
General Secretary,
National Council of Churches in India

Wednesday 27th October 2021

As we turn 75 . . .

Message on the 75th Indian Independence day

On this day in the year 2021 we begin the 75th year of our journey as an independent nation. On the 15th of August 1947 we wrested our independence from the occupiers and with it the right to govern us ourselves.

Several experiments based on different political ideologies have brought us to where we are today. While we celebrate the successes, we must confess that we have not adequately reflected on things that we have not done well. In some cases we have tried to set right the wrongs in ways that are more damaging. We should also confess that we have failed to capture the dreams and aspirations of the average citizens and give expression to it. Oftentimes we have tried to compete with the our neighbors and peers and failed to cater to the needs of our own people.

The annual observance of this sacred day of the independence of our nation and particularly the 75th year can be an opportune moment to revisit what we wanted to be, where circumstances have taken us, and how best to correct our course to realise all that we wanted to be. We should seize the occasion lest it’s momentousness be just another memory.

Promotion of a dynamic intermingling of all faith and belief traditions toward the affirmation of dignity and life of every single citizen, overcoming the majority-minority polemic by drawing the national ‘development’ agenda from the perspective of the weak and vulnerable sections of the population including ethnic, religious, and linguistic minorities as well as those of gender identity, sexual orientation, age and ability who together make up a large percentage of the population of this country, nurturing a human rights oriented secular community in which freedom of conscience, speech, expression, association, assembly, religion and belief is lifted up with no compromise, cannot but be on our agenda.

Focusing on the ‘panchayati raj’ as the key to planning, and the identification, acknowledgement and strengthening of the ‘gram sabhas’ as primary institutions of local governance, can be the key. This should strengthen participation of ALL people in the realisation of our common destiny and will give confidence that it is WE who govern ourselves the way we wanted and are not dictated to behave the way our ‘rulers’ in the national or state capital want us to, nor be dictated by finance capital but make it serve the interest of the common person.

The Christian scripture, as would all revelations that are authenticated by their focus on the emancipation of life of all, affirms that “to each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for common good (1 Corinthians 12:7)”. It further exhorts that each of us look not only to ours but to the interests of all (Philippians 2:4)

Prayer moves the hand that moves the world. On this NCCI-EFI National Day of Prayer (August 15, 2021) let us thus align our will to that of the God of the universe, the Principal and Ultimate principle, the source of all things visible and invisible, and the Great Leveller. And….in so doing challenge exercise of authority that is unjust, also thereby affirming with all its citizens an India that evolves further to be our Pride – in which there is no poor, no oppressed, no marginalised and none live with stigma and ostracization. We stand firm when we kneel more.

God bless India. Please accept the best wishes of the National Council of Churches in India on this solemn occasion of the observance of our 75th Independence day. Jai Hind!

Rev. Asir Ebenezer (he, his, him)
General Secretary NCCI

NCCI remembers His Holiness Basileos Marthoma Paulose II

The National Council of Churches in India is saddened to receive the news of the demise of H H Basileos Marthoma Paulose II, Catholicos of the East, Malankara Metropolitan, Supreme Head of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church who has entered eternal rest on Monday the 12th July 2021. May his memory be eternal and blessed.

We remember with gratitude to God the ministries of His Holiness within the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, in the global orthodox communion and in the Indian and global ecumenical settings. We thank God for the spiritual leadership that His Holiness has given to the Church and in particular to the Episcopal synod and the clergy of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church.

The leadership of the National Council of Churches in India has fond memories of being warmly received by His Holiness during the many visits to the Catholicate Palace  in Kerala. His Holiness’ visits to the St. Thomas Orthodox Theological Seminary in Kalmeshwar, Nagpur, were always occasions for close interactions on issues relating to the Church and ecumenism. His Holiness’ visits to the NCCI headquarters have been joyous occasions of warmth and friendship.

The warmth and friendliness, and the smile on his face that puts one at ease, endeared His Holiness to one and all. Despite the important and venerable position he was bestowed with, His Holiness was accessible on all matters of ecumenical interests and was keen to dialogue on matters that were of concern.

The Most Reverend Dr.  P C Singh, President of the National Council of Churches in India has conveyed his deep sympathies and condolences at the death of His Holiness. He said, “The death of His Holiness Basileos Marthoma Paulose II, Catholicos of the East, Malankara Metropolitan, is a great loss to the Malankara Orhodox Syrian Church and to the NCCI family. We pray to God to give peace and solace to the members of the Episcopal synod, the clergy and the members of the church at this time of grief and mourning”.

We pray to God Almighty to bestow the Church with wisdom and guidance at this time of mourning to remember with gratitude the life of blessedness of His Holiness, and rededicate oneself individually and together as the Body of Christ, to a life of faithful obedience and relevant witness to our common Lord and Saviour Jesus the Christ.

Rev. Asir Ebenezer
General Secretary, NCCI
13th July 2021

NCCI condemns the attack on Palestinian territories; urges Government of India to urge Israel to stop the attacks

The Kairos India Partnership of the National Council of Churches in India (NCCI), consisting of the Christian Institute for Study of Religion and Society (CISRS), the Student Christian Movement of India (SCMI) and the National Dalit Christian Watch (NDCW) condemn the continued evictions of Palestinians and forced military presence in holy sites of the Palestinian communities leading to acts of aggression and inappropriate use of force by Israel causing untold suffering and loss of human lives.

We realize that the conflicts have a history and geopolitical interests of dominant communities. Debate on who incited and who provoked will continue unabated. Yet we call for restraint on both sides to the conflict so that loss of lives and property will be avoided.

We extend our solidarity to the families of the victims and we stand with the people of Gaza who are largely affected by the trauma of the attack of the Israeli armed forces. Let God enable all the affected ones to experience eternal peace and concord in this time of grief and chaos. As the world goes through the struggles in controlling the pandemic the challenges such as these put a dire question towards demeaning the idea of humanity and coexistence of diverse communities in different places.

The Kairos India Partnership believes in dialogue and peaceful coexistence of peoples of both Palestine and Israel. We stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine who are at the receiving end and support expressions of solidarity to Palestine that are coming in from different parts of the world.

We recognize the intervention of India’s Permanent Representative to the UN in affirming the rights of the people of Palestine,  and call upon the Government of India to use its good offices, and through its diplomatic channels, urge Israel to restrain from such use of brutal force over the Palestinian territories, particularly at this time over Gaza. This will help avoid instability, and avert a war-like situation that looms over the region.

May God grant, to all parties to the conflict, the moral and ethical conscience – that we are meant to live justly, with all people and ethnicity, in peace and with reconciliation.


Rev. Asir Ebenezer
General Secretary, NCCI

Rev. Dr. Santanu Kumar Patro – a tribute

The untimely demise of Rev Dr Santanu Kumar Patro, the Registrar of the Senate of Serampore College has cast a gloom over the minds of several of his associates and friends in the country and in the world. As an administrator and an ecumenical leader, Dr Patro has been a close friend of the NCCI and its network churches and their theological colleges for so many years, walking together on many contemporary issues that the NCCI network has involved, particularly during the last decade.

Born on October 20, 1960 in Berhampur, Odisha, he was ordained as a Presbyter of CNI Cuttack Diocese. Besides the Church of North India, his services included the World Vision India, as a Faculty at Eastern Theological College, Jorhat and Gurukul Lutheran Theological College and Research Institute, Chennai and as Registrar of the Senate of Serampore College from 2013-2021. His area of specialization was in the field of Religion and was a renowned scholar in religious studies, writing many articles and guiding many students. His scholarly articles on various subjects related to mission, ministry, theological education, religious studies, interfaith relations, ecumenism, etc were published in many reputed journals.

He was a visionary who always aimed for achieving great things for God. He worked tirelessly to take theological education to the higher levels which will in turn be a lasting contribution to churches in India and the Global South. His dream to provide quality theological education was seen during his service at the Senate of Serampore College. He had a special concern for the marginalized, through his teaching and service, whereby he was a true friend of the marginalized sections of our society. He envisioned an effective theological education that takes seriously the sufferings of the people as the basis of theologizing. As the Registrar of the Senate, we have seen some path breaking initiatives being taken, along with the NCCI in the areas of HIV and AIDS and thereafter in the area of gender and sexuality. A new syllabus in these sensitive areas of HIV and AIDS and then Human Sexuality was implemented at the Senate through his initiatives.

Being an ecumenist, Dr. Patro upheld the spirit of ecumenism in his writings and was one of his qualities which stood out during his ministry, particularly during his services at the Senate of Serampore College, which is a conglomeration of different colleges belonging to churches of various denominations. He understood the need for ecumenism in theological education and took serious efforts to develop it by embracing leaders of different churches with the utmost respect. In our long standing relationship with Dr Patro, the NCCI member churches and its affiliated theological colleges had a close relationship with him, promoting ecumenical values and challenging them towards key issues. As NCCI, we have indeed lost a true friend in Dr Patro, which we recognize as an irreparable loss for the ecumenical fraternity in India.

At this time of grief and loss, we extend our heartfelt condolences to his wife and children and share in solidarity in bidding a tearful adieu to Rev Dr Santanu Kumar Patro. May our resurrected Lord give strength to the family and may his life be an inspiration to all of us in the times ahead.


Rev. Asir Ebenezer
General Secretary, NCCI