Kochi: Supreme head of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church, Patriach Ignatius Aphrem-II, arrived in Kerala on Saturday on a 11-day state visit.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, Revenue Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Excise Minister K Babu and Catholicos Baselios Thomas I were among those who received him at the airport here this morning.
This is the first time the Patriarch is coming to India after he was elected the Supreme head of the Orthodox church in March last year.
Hundreds of faithful had also gathered at the nearby Nedumbassery airport to welcome him.
The Patriarch is expected to preside over the regional synod of the church at St George Cathedral, Karingachira this afternoon.
He will leave for New Delhi on February 16.