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Malankara (Indian) Orthodox Syrian Church - Rankings by Area (Counties) [Metro-Areas] [States]

The Malankara (Indian) Orthodox Syrian Church in the United States is part of the global Malankara (Indian) Orthodox Syrian Church which is headquartered in Kottayam, Kerala State, in South India. It is one of the so-called Oriental Orthodox Churches (the others being Armenian, Coptic, Eritrean, Ethiopian, and Syriac) which, unlike Eastern Orthodox Churches, recognize the validity of theological decisions of only the first three Ecumenical Councils. It is also known simply as the Indian Orthodox Church or the Orthodox Church of India, and it traces its origins to 52 AD, when St. Thomas brought Christianity to India. The church has historically been influenced by the Syrian (Syriac) Orthodox Church of Antioch. In 1665, the Syrian Patriarch sent a bishop to lead the community of Christians in India on the condition that they accept Syrian Christology and would follow the West Syrian rite. In 1912, however, the Indian Orthodox Church was divided over the issue of the authority of Syrian Patriarch. One faction declared itself an autocephalous (fully independent) Church. The other group remained loyal to the Syrian Patriarch. The first group became what is now the Malankara (Indian) Orthodox Syrian Church. In the 1950s, a number of prominent priests from India came to America for graduate studies in theology. In 1954, a delegation from the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church attended the Second World Council of Churches held in Evanston, Illinois. Later that year, Bishop Daniel Mor Philoxenos celebrated the Holy Qurbono (Divine Liturgy) at St. John the Divine Episcopalian Cathedral in New York City. This was the first recorded celebration of the Divine Liturgy of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church in the United States. In 1965, the new U.S. immigration law made it possible for thousands of professionally qualified individuals to come to America. Many Malankara Orthodox Christians (especially nurses) from Kerala, South India, arrived in the United States during this time. In 1972, the St. Thomas Malankara Orthodox Syrian parish was legally founded in the State of New York. It first used the Lampman chapel at Union Theological Seminary in New York City. In 1979, the Synod of the Malankara Indian Orthodox Church established the Diocese of America with Metropolitan Mor Makarios (former Metropolitan of Bombay) as its first Diocesan Bishop. In 2009, the American Diocese of the Malankara Orthodox Church was divided in two: the Northeast American and the Southwest American. The Divine Liturgy in Malankara Orthodox Indian parishes in the United States is celebrated in Malayalam and English, although at times classic Syriac (an ancient Church language, a dialect of Aramaic) is used. All prayers are sung in the form of chants and melodies. The Malankara Orthodox Church has a tradition of communal “congregational” singing in the church, which is not common in many other Orthodox Churches. A musical notation system has not been developed in the Malankara culture, and melodies are transmitted between generations via oral tradition. Malankara liturgical hymns are chanted antiphonally (“call-and-response” style of singing) by two choirs. In addition, worship services in the Malankara Orthodox Church also incorporate various traditional Hindu elements. [View our profile of Malankara (Indian) Orthodox Syrian Church]

Using data from the 1980-2020 U.S. Religion Census, this list ranks U.S. Counties on the highest percent of the population in the Malankara (Indian) Orthodox Syrian Church. You can sort the list by clicking on the column headings.


Rank
2020
Rank
2010
Rank
2000
County Percent
2020
Percent
2010
Percent
2000
2 5 1 Fort Bend County, Texas 0.18 0.09 0.17
1 1 2 Rockland County, New York 0.19 0.22 0.14
3 2 3 Westchester County, New York 0.14 0.17 0.13
6 3 4 Richmond County, New York 0.09 0.13 0.10
10 15 5 Angelina County, Texas 0.06 0.03 0.09
4 7 6 Nassau County, New York 0.11 0.08 0.07
10 7 7 Howard County, Maryland 0.06 0.08 0.06
18 10 7 Bronx County, New York 0.03 0.05 0.06
7 5 9 Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania 0.07 0.09 0.05
7 11 9 Dallas County, Texas 0.07 0.04 0.05
15 7 11 Montgomery County, Maryland 0.04 0.08 0.04
23 21 11 Williamson County, Texas 0.02 0.02 0.04
23 11 13 Queens County, New York 0.02 0.04 0.03
18 15 13 Bergen County, New Jersey 0.03 0.03 0.03
18 15 15 Morris County, New Jersey 0.03 0.03 0.02
47 24 15 Onondaga County, New York 0.00 0.01 0.02
24 15 Essex County, New Jersey 0.01 0.02
47 34 15 Orleans Parish, Louisiana 0.00 0.00 0.02
15 San Mateo County, California 0.02
18 11 20 DeKalb County, Georgia 0.03 0.04 0.01
31 11 20 Oakland County, Michigan 0.01 0.04 0.01
23 24 20 Broward County, Florida 0.02 0.01 0.01
23 24 20 Oklahoma County, Oklahoma 0.02 0.01 0.01
31 24 20 Cook County, Illinois 0.01 0.01 0.01
31 24 20 Middlesex County, Massachusetts 0.01 0.01 0.01
31 24 20 Suffolk County, New York 0.01 0.01 0.01
31 24 20 Harris County, Texas 0.01 0.01 0.01
47 34 20 Jefferson County, Colorado 0.00 0.00 0.01
47 34 20 Hillsborough County, Florida 0.00 0.00 0.01
47 34 20 Monroe County, New York 0.00 0.00 0.01
34 20 Wayne County, Michigan 0.00 0.01
31 34 32 St. Louis County, Missouri 0.01 0.00 0.00
47 34 32 Los Angeles County, California 0.00 0.00 0.00
47 34 32 Orange County, Florida 0.00 0.00 0.00
34 32 Kings County, New York 0.00 0.00
4 4 Bucks County, Pennsylvania 0.11 0.10
23 15 Loudoun County, Virginia 0.02 0.03
31 15 Passaic County, New Jersey 0.01 0.03
15 Middlesex County, New Jersey 0.03
31 21 Dutchess County, New York 0.01 0.02
21 Albany County, New York 0.02
23 24 Alameda County, California 0.02 0.01
24 Columbia County, Georgia 0.01
15 34 Bexar County, Texas 0.04 0.00
23 34 Wake County, North Carolina 0.02 0.00
47 34 Maricopa County, Arizona 0.00 0.00
47 34 Sacramento County, California 0.00 0.00
47 34 Duval County, Florida 0.00 0.00
47 34 Pasco County, Florida 0.00 0.00
47 34 Clark County, Nevada 0.00 0.00
47 34 Hamilton County, Tennessee 0.00 0.00
47 34 King County, Washington 0.00 0.00
34 Polk County, Iowa 0.00
34 Wyandotte County, Kansas 0.00
34 New York County, New York 0.00
34 Cuyahoga County, Ohio 0.00
7 Macomb County, Michigan 0.07
10 DuPage County, Illinois 0.06
10 Union County, New Jersey 0.06
14 Schenectady County, New York 0.05
15 Spokane County, Washington 0.04
18 Delaware County, Pennsylvania 0.03
23 Woodbury County, Iowa 0.02
31 Collier County, Florida 0.01
31 Seminole County, Florida 0.01
31 Fulton County, Georgia 0.01
31 Richmond County, Georgia 0.01
31 Delaware County, Ohio 0.01
31 Summit County, Ohio 0.01
31 Montgomery County, Pennsylvania 0.01
31 Thurston County, Washington 0.01
47 San Diego County, California 0.00
47 Santa Cruz County, California 0.00
47 Hartford County, Connecticut 0.00
47 Gwinnett County, Georgia 0.00
47 Jackson County, Missouri 0.00
47 Mecklenburg County, North Carolina 0.00
47 Shelby County, Tennessee 0.00
47 Collin County, Texas 0.00
47 Hidalgo County, Texas 0.00
             

Note that data collection methods for religious bodies change over time, affecting the comparability of statistics. For further information, see the U.S. Religion Census website at https://www.usreligioncensus.org/.

The 2020 data were collected by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies (ASARB) and include data for 373 religious bodies or groups. Of these, the ASARB was able to gather data on congregations and adherents for 217 and on congregations only for 156.

[More information on the data sources]

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