Ref: CBCI-Gen/Cir-10/2019 27th April, 2019
TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF THE HIERARCHY
BISHOP SIMOM KAIPURAM, CM
( 1954 – 2019 )
Your Eminence, Your Beatitude, Your Excellency, Your Grace, Your Lordship,
Greetings from the CBCI Secretariat, New Delhi.
On April 22, 2019 Monday morning at 1.45 am our dear Bishop Rt.Rev. Simon Kaipuram,CM passed away for the eternal reward of the Lord. At the demise of Bishop Simon the Diocese of Balasore has lost a great visionary. He was 65 years old. The sad news was received with disbelief and deep sorrow by the people of all segments throughout India with whom the Bishop associated with love and humility. The absence of Bishop Simon will be dearly missed by people of Odisha especially the Priests, Sisters, Brothers and Lay faithful of Balasore Diocese.
On 21st evening Bishop had the dinner with the community members of Balasore and he was quite pleasant and joyful until the time they said good night for rest. At 12.10 early in the morning, Bishop felt uneasiness and he came down and opened the grill to communicate the same to the Fathers who were in the presbytery. The Fathers rushed him to Jyothi Hospital and the doctors while examining Bishop Simon found out that the causes of his weakness are ‘known case of hyper tension’ and ‘perspiration with chest pain’. ECG reports showed ST elevation and acute MI. So the cardiologist prescribed lifesaving drugs and injection and the same were given instantly to rescue Bishop Simon. However Bishop did not respond to the medicines. Therefore Bishop Thomas administered the sacrament of anointing of the sick to him at about 1.40 am. Although the doctors tried their best, Bishop Simon breathed his last at 1.45 am due to massive heart attack.
Listening to the Divine call to become a Vincentian, he bade adieu to the family members and joined in the Congregation of Mission. So he left home and reached at Bhanjanagar in Odisha for Minor Seminary studies in 1969 with a vision to become a missionary priest. He was ordained priest on 20th December 1980. He was sent to Rome to pursue doctrinal studies on Sacred Scripture in 1984. He was the rector of Acquinas College, Gopalpur when he was appointed Bishop of Balasore by His Holiness Pope Francis on 9th December, 2013. He was consecrated bishop on January 30, 2014. The vaccum created by his sad demise is not to be easily filled in because Bishop Simon was much loved pastor, kind and caring person for the people of Odisha. People were always important for him that he was comfortable in dealing to a poor man on the street as any high officials or rich in the society. Throughout his ministry as a priest and shepherd, Bishop Simon showed a great affinity and pastoral dedication to the Catholic community.
Being a Scripture scholar, he was a visiting professor to many seminaries in India. He was also much sought-after for preaching retreats to religious sisters and priests due to his scripture background, simple life, deep spirituality and acceptability.
The funeral service was held at Cathedral Church, Balasore on 24th April. The Holy Mass was presided over by Most Rev.Archbishop John Barwa, SVD, the Archbishop of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar concelebrated by Most Rev.Mathew Moolakkatt, OSB the Archbishop of Kottayam and Rt.Rev.Thomas Thiruthalil, CM along with the other Bishops of Odisha, Kerala and Jharkhand. A large number of Priests, Sisters, lay Faithful and people from other denominations and communities had gathered for the funeral service. A good number of Provincial Superiors were also present for the function. The family members of Bishop Simon had arrived on the previous day and they were witnessing the programme on the day of funeral. The officials, press-media and a number of political leaders including Sj.Naveen Patnaik, the Chief Minister of Odisha also visited the spot to pay homage to Bishop Simon.
The Requiem Mass for Bishop Simon will be celebrated in the cathedral at 11.00 am on Tuesday 30th April.
His mortal remains were laid to rest at the Cathedral Church in Balasore. His death leaves a significant gap in Balasore Diocese. May His Soul Rest In Peace.
Obituary sent from the Diocese of Balasore.
Bishop’s House, Fr.Isaac Puthenangady
Balasore Diocesan Administrator