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Synod of Diamper

1599. An unofficial synod held on the Malabar coast of SW India, uniting the so-called Thomas Christians with the Church of Rome. Allegedly dating back to the missionary work of Thomas the Apostle, these native Christians followed the Syriac liturgy of Addai and Mari.* The Portuguese discovered them in 1498, and for a time they lived in harmony with the Portuguese-sponsored churches. By the end of the sixteenth century, however, their Nestorianism* and their refusal to conform to a Latin liturgy led the Portuguese archbishop of Goa, Alexis de Menezes, to convoke the synod. It rooted out the Nestorian heresy and began the Westernization of the church.