A BIOGRAPHY OF
Mar Tooma Shanchara
+The Most Rev. Jon-Terrance Diegel, L.H.D., D.D.
The Western Catholic Church Of Malabar, Malabar Rite
By The Rev. Nesta Rock, Ph.D. +
The Most Rev. Diegel was baptized into the Roman Catholic Church and attended Roman Catholic grade-high school. After graduating high school in 1953, he became a postulate with the Christian brothers in Northern California.
In 1956, he directed the Gregorian Choir while on assigned tour in the Army in Okinawa. He then graduated as a speech pathologist and therapist from Long Beach State University in 1963 and taught in a Catholic School (from kindergarten to high school) as a speech pathologist and therapist in Northern California from 1963-1970. He attended Metaphysical classes with Dr. Arnold Michel in Sacramento, CA at the Church of Religious Science in 1966. In 1968, he was initiated into Kriya yoga (at Yogananda’s “Self-Realization Fellowship”).
In the early 1970’s, he began teaching Meditation and Metaphysics throughout California—and eventually began to expand his teaching into a U.S. tour after graduating from Ridgedale Seminary, in Chattanooga, Tennessee with a Doctorate in Humane Letters.
He moved to Honolulu in 1972, and both successfully completed an EST training course and pursued an extensive study in Hindu religion with Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, founder of The Himalaya Academy Publications [located on the island of Kauai]. As well, The Most Rev. Diegel opened a Bookstore and Metaphysical Center in Honolulu and taught the Trinity process and other metaphysical classes throughout the Hawaiian Islands.
In 1974, he co-created a spiritual awareness class called “Creative Awareness Dynamics”. In 1974-1975, he participated in and acted as Master of Ceremonies at The Rainbow Festivals (a gathering of Metaphysical and Spiritual Leaders from all over the world). He began training instructors to teach the Trinity Process and the Creative Awareness Dynamics in 1976.
He returned to California in 1977 and opened a Center in Los Angeles, teaching Trident Training, Kabala and Tarot. He opened another center in Santa Monica in 1978, and in 1979, co-created and taught varying esoteric courses at the ICC Festival in Pasadena.
As well, he co-created and instructed a course entitled “Transformation, N.O.W.” in 1980. And, in 1980, he was ordained a Priest in “The Catholic Apostolic Church of Antioch, Malabar Rite”. He started his own Sacramental Church “Church of Antioch, Malabar Rite” in 1981 in Los Angeles.
He was elevated to Archpriest in The Church of Antioch in 1982. He received both an M.A. and a Doctorate of Divinity degree from the Patriarch Herman Adrian Spruit [The Most Rev. Adrian VII] in 1983, at which time he began being trained as Patriarch-Elect by the Patriarch. The (then) Very Rev. Diegel began conducting Seminary training throughout the entire Southwest, as instructor for the parent Church, The Catholic Apostolic Church of Antioch, Malabar Rite—throughout AZ, CA, CO and Las Vegas, NV.
In 1984, he started a Seminary Training Correspondence course entitled “The Academy of St. Tomas of India.” [The Apostle Thomas was the founder of The Church of Malabar, which was located on the eastern seacoast in Malabar, India.] In addition to the classes he already was instructing in person, he added students in Tennessee, West Virginia, and extended throughout more cities in Colorado by initiating correspondence courses.
He was elected to Bishop on June 10, 1984 and was given the title Mar Tooma Shanchara. He was consecrated by Patriarch Spruit [Mar Adrian VII], of the Archdiocese of The Catholic Apostolic Church of Antioch, Malabar Rite in the Royal Chapel of The Queen Mary, in Long Beach, Ca. The nine consecrating Archbishops and Bishops were as follows: Mar Adrian VII; The Most Rev. Meri Louise Spruit; MAR David I & I; The Most Rev. Helene Seymour; The Most Rev. Warren Prall Watters; The Most Rev. Arnold Eyre; The Most Rev. Shirley Eyre and The Most Rev. Denys du Pont—all imposing “laying-on-of-hands”. The Captain of the Queen Mary, The Rev. Joseph Gregory, a priest in The Church Of Antioch, as well as over a hundred people attended.
On 15 January, 1987, he was elevated by acclaim as Primus Bishop of the “American Catholic Church of Malabar” [now entitled the “Western Catholic Church of Malabar, Malabar Rite”].
In 1991, he received a certificate as an advanced N.L.P. [neurolingual programming] practitioner. He then received an N.L.P. Psycholinguistic Programming practitioner certificate in Kentucky.