On December 23, 2003 His Holiness Pope John Paul II made a sovereign decision that the status quo (pro gente suddistica) of the Eparchy of Kottayam must be maintained and left it to the Bishops’ Synod of the Syro-Malabar church to decide on the desired enhancement of the juridical status of the Eparchy of Kottayam. In November 2004 the synod gave its consent to elevate the Eparchy of Kottayam to the rank of a metropolitan see without a suffrogan eparchy. On March 21, 2005 the congregation for the oriental churches issued a letter of no-objection to the decision of the Bishop’s synod. Accordingly, on may 9, 2005 the Major Archbishop Mar Varkey Cardinal Vithayathil issued the decree “The Eparchy of Kottayam” elevating the Eparchy of Kottayam to the rank of a metropolitan see, and another decree “God our loving father”, appointing Mar Kuriakose Kunnacherry as the first metropolitan of the newly erected metropolitan see of Kottayam. On June 3, 2005, the feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, at a liturgical service the Major Archbishop canonically erected the metropolitan see of Kottayam and ordained and enthroned Mar Kuriakose Kunnacherry as the first Metropolitan of Kottayam. On the retirment of Mar Kunncherry, Mar Mathew Moolakkatt took over as the Metropolitan of the Archdiocese of Kottayam on January 14, 2006. Mar Joseph Pandarasseril was consecrated Auxiliary Bishop of Kottayam on October 28, 2006.