The Dubai Mar Thoma Church in Jebel Ali stands as a proud testament to the Lord's abounding favour on those who sought his name in a foreign land over 40 years ago. By His grace, we received the permission and land to construct our own church of worship. For this we are indebted to the honourable ruling family and government of this emirate.
As the rapid development in Dubai progressed in 1960s, people from different parts of India, especially Kerala, travelled here for the prospects of employment and trade. The Keralite Christians who came to this land maintained their religious fervour and came together for fellowship and prayer.
It was not long before the earnest worship of the Mar Thoma believers earned themselves the conviction and feeling of oneness to achieve their first milestone. A total of 130 eager Marthomites gathered in the "OUR OWN SCHOOL" building in Bur Dubai on 27th July 1969 and made a firm decision to stand together as a Mar Thoma Parish and framed the rules and regulations applicable based on the Mar Thoma Sabha Bharana Ghadna. The First team of office bearers of the Mar Thoma Parish, Dubai was unanimously elected in this formal meeting. The gathering was opened by the singing of the hymn "Ninte hitham polae enne nithyam nadatheedename..." And by the Lord's will, the Mar Thoma Parish Dubai grew from humble beginnings to a 5000-strong congregation, becoming one of the largest parishes in the Mar Thoma Syrian Church.
Late His Grace Most Rev. Dr. Juhanon Mar Thoma Metropolitan approved the local constitution and appointed Rev. K.S Varghese, the then vicar of Bahrain, in charge of the Dubai parish as well. The official inauguration of the parish was held on 21st September 1969 in a meeting after the Holy Communion Service led by Rev. D. Alexander, the Vicar of Kuwait Mar Thoma Parish and our Vicar-designate Rev. K.S Varghese. The inauguration was an impressive event that caused many more Marthomites and a few CSI brethren to join the parish. What is notable is the spiritual initiation and sincere participation of the members which inspired more to join, and allowed the church to actively undertake Christian responsibilities, especially towards meeting the needs of the homeland mission.
Our first resident Vicar Late Rev. M.M Thomas initiated the organization of a few Mar Thoma prayer groups in Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah and the east coast. Later those prayer groups grew to become independent parishes. Under Parish supervision, some prayer groups also mushroomed in the outskirts of Dubai. The Vicar had the tedious job of rendering pastoral services to Abu Dhabi as well as Muscat, a region also part of his vicariate. The parish in Dubai grew stronger day by day in its mission and service.
Although the regular worship services were held on Sunday evening in the beginning, it was later changed to Thursday evening for the convenience of the members. In due course the participation increased and the parish felt the need to move to a more spacious venue for worship. The prayer and effort for our own church continued even as early as then.
On 25th December 1975, the Mar Thoma Parish Dubai shifted its communion from the school premises to the Holy Trinity Church. A worship service was started on Friday evening in the year 1988 for members who were not able to attend the service on Thursday.
As the church grew in leaps and bounds, giving way to a second generation of members and newcomers who are not well-versed in Malayalam, an English prayer meeting and Holy Communion was initiated early in 1997.
On 22nd February, 1999, the Government of Dubai allotted 20,000 sq. ft. of land at Jebel Ali for the construction of an exclusive church for the Mar Thoma Parish. The foundation stone was laid on 29th September 2000, and the consecration ceremony was held on Friday, 14th December, 2001. Two days later, on Sunday, the 16th of December, 2001, the members, numbering over 5000, participated in the first Holy Communion in the church wholly owned and dedicated to the Mar Thoma Church in Dubai.