For the first time in the history of the Church, the clergymen would get a small token of money regularly after they retire.
The Jacobite Church has launched a model pension scheme for its priests who would retire at the age of 70 would get 3,000 rupees as pension.
Extending the scheme to families, the church has decided to provide half the pension amount to the priest's wife after his death.
And if a priest dies during service, 50 per cent of his last-drawn salary will be paid as pension to the wife.
The decision was taken at a meeting held in Aluva, Kerala, on Sunday.
It was also decided to fix the basic salary of priests at 10,000 rupees.
"Since our priests are allowed to have a married life, we are focusing on their welfare. No other church offers this benefit," said Fr Varghese Kallapara, spokesperson of the church.
The church can make use of the service of priests even after retirement, but only for chapels and they will be paid a monthly allowance of 10,000 rupees.
The facility is not extended to nuns of the church as their care after retirement would be entrusted with the respective convents.
Other churches like the Syro-Malabar provide retirement homes for their senior priests and bishops.
"We have fixed the retirement age at 75, and it is applicable to priests and bishops. If their health permits they can continue," said Fr Paul Thelakkat, spokesperson of the Syro-Malabar Church.
Since priests take a vow of poverty, they would not accept any financial support.
The church has a number of retirement homes across the state to ensure their welfare.
The post-retirement life of diocesan priests, like those belonging to CMI, would be the responsibility of the congregation.
In all churches, nuns do not have a financial assistance scheme, but convents provide necessary support after they retire.
Source: times of india
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