Thrissur: Mar Aprem, Archbishop of the Assyrian Church of the East, who turned 74 recently, is on a mission to bring out his 74th book. Titled 14th Holy Synod and Sir Bani Yas Island, it’s a travelogue about his journey from Abu Dhabi to the Sir Bani Yas Island and the 600-year-old history of Christianity in the island. It will be released shortly.
The Archbishop is a man of many talents: poet, travel writer, sitar-player and humorist. A prolific writer, his books on travel, humour, poetry, history, biography and autobiography are popular.
It’s unusual for a man of the cloth to write books with titles such as Laugh with the Bishop, Laugh to Health, Holy Humour, Joy to the World, Holy Smile and Not So Funny.
In the foreword to one of the Archbishop's books, Sukumar Azhikode, the late writer commented, 'I am convinced now that Christians and bishops know to laugh.’ The books on jokes books have been translated into several languages.
Mar Aprem has also written two autobiographies, Strange but True and Not So Strange and is giving finishing touches to a third one, Sitarist and Satirist. Widely travelled, he has written 25 travelogues. He has a collection of rare manuscripts in Eastern Syriac. He took active part in encouraging ecumenical attempts for the preservation of these manuscripts.
His sermons are a delight to listen to. Born in Thrissur to Devassy and Kochumariyam of the Mooken family, Mar Aprem (formerly George Davis Mooken) is a scholar in Syriac language and literature. Educated in India, England and the US, he holds two master's degrees in Church History.