Our Founder

Blessed Kuriakose Elias Chavara

Blessed Kuriakose Elias Chavara

Blessed Kuriakose Elias Chavara

Blessed Kuriakose Elias Chavara was born on 10 February 1805 at Kainakary,Kerala. At the age of five he began his studies in a village school, called Kalari. When he was 13, he joined the seminary at Pallipuram for his priestly training.While he was in the seminary, his parents and his eldest brother died of an epidemic. On 29 November 1829 he became a priest.

Blessed Chavara was instrumental in founding two Catholic Religious Congregations one for men, Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI), and the other for women, Congregation of Mother of Carmel (CMC), for the spiritual renewal and all rounddevelopment of society.

Starting seven ashrams and a convent in different parts of Kerala, Blessed Chavara initiated a spiritual movement among the people of Kerala. He established the first Catholic Sanskrit School, a major seminary and a printing & publishing house at Mannanam.He directed that every church should start a school attached to it and encouraged children even poorer sections to attend the schools by supplying midday meal and dress for them. He founded a ‘Home of Charity’ to take care of the destitute, the beggars, the uncared sick and the old. He also organized the first voluntary charitable association in Kerala for self-help among the needy.

Even in the midst of such manifold activities, he found time to write several literary and spiritual books in prose as well as verse. Among them, ‘Anastasyayude Rakthasakshyam’ is the first narrative poem and ‘Nalagamangal’, the first chronicle of history in Malayalam. He knew seven languages– Malayalam, Tamil, Sanskrit, Syriac, Latin, Italian and Portuguese.

Blessed Chavara was a man of prayer and great charity. He lived for 65 years and died on 3rd January 1871. His sanctity was officially recognised by the Church, when Pope John Paul II declared him‘Blessed’ on 8th February 1986. Blessed Chavara is the heavenly patron of all CMI and CMC institutions. Let us pray to him to intercede before God for all our needs, especially for success in our studies.

Important Sayings of Blessed Chavara

  • Children, you are God’s gift in the hands of your parents.
  • The children who have a love of God and fear of God will love and respect their parents.
  • Trust your mother; God will hear the prayers of the mother as yours.
  • Food is for the body, so is wisdom for the intellect.
  • Go to school regularly and recall to mind what is taught during the week.
  • Laziness fosters evil habits.
  • Let your friends be those who love God.
  • The day in which you have not done any good to your fellowmen will not be recorded in your book of life.
  •  Keeping bad books is like hiding fire in hay.
  • Regular reading of good books and meditating on them will illumine the mind.
  • Attain punctuality by means of a regular time table.
  • You angels will be turned to devils, if you fall into evil situations.
  • You ought to reach home before evening and take part in evening prayers.
  • Desire that others love you, and not that they fear you.
  • Take special care to keep modesty while you sit, walk or lie down.
  • You are to forgive and forget the wrong doings of others.
  • Tell me who your friends are and I will tell who you are.
  • What you earn by deceit and theft will melt like snow.
  • Idleness is the mother of all vices and would induce one to the habit of drinking.
  • Both stinginess and extravagance are equally sinful.
  • Had you not lighted the lamp during the day time, you could have lit it during the night.
  • Do not insult or trouble the poor.
  • God decides your vocation and it is for you to choose it.
  • If your parents have left any obligation of restitution, fulfill it with diligence and devotion.
  • Even if you are grown in age and maturity, you have to respect your parents and submit to them.
  • Do not hate your own brethren.
  • It is the duty of children to look after their parents.
  • Do not cause for your parents to shed tears on account of you.
  • The humble man is the greatest among men.
  •  Since you belong to God, you have to give yourself back to God.