Mar Thoma church as a worshiping community have been in existence in UK since the early 1950s. The congregation in the early days mainly consists of students who came here for higher studies and a few in search of employment. The Indian YMCA and student hostel in central London was the focal point. Regular worships started in 1957 and it is recognized as first Mar Thoma congregation in the western hemisphere. The 1970s have witnessed significant increase in Marthomites coming from Malaysia, Singapore, India and parts of Africa. With the increase in members came the need for bigger premises and the services were shifted to St Mary’s Parish Church, Kennington, London and 1989 to St Katharine Cree, in the city of London. With the growth in membership came the need for organizing the parishes at regional level for more effective ministry. Today, there are 8 parishes and 2 congregations.
St James parish continued to be the central London based parish. Membership consists mainly of families who reside in and around London and the Home Counties. Given the parish’s location and outreach program, it attracts significant number of students and young people who come to this great and ancient city for work and study. The regular Sunday worship services as well as special services are held at the St Katharine Cree church, Leadenhall Street, London EC3A 3DH. St.James Mar Thoma Family consist of 190 families and we have very dynamic activities in Sunday School, Youth League, Choir, Sevika Sangham, Edavaka Mission.
The parish acquired the property situated at Avery Hill Road, New Eltham, in the London Borough of Greenwich, in 2005. It currently serves as the Mar Thoma Centre with facility for assembly and leisure activities. The centre consists of an assembly hall, football and cricket pitches and tennis courts. The centre is the focal point for much of the social, cultural and sporting and outreach activity of St James community as well as the community at large.
At our heart is a living relationship with God revealed through Christ in the Bible. We are lighted to lighten and we are committed to living that out in our everyday lives where ever we are placed. We are part of the worldwide Mar Thoma community and we are international but we are also a family.
“Mar Thoma Church defines itself as “Apostolic in origin, Universal in nature, Biblical in faith, Evangelical in principle, Ecumenical in outlook, Oriental in worship, Democratic in function, and Episcopal in character.”
All are welcome and if you are here for business, pleasure or studies, come and join us for worship and fellowship with the Body of Christ