Our founder St. Kuriakose Elias Chavara was born on 10th February 1805 at Kainakari in Alappuzha District. He joined the Seminary at a young age and became a priest in the year 1829 and established the CMI congregation in 1831. Thereafter he dedicated each and every moment of his life for the service of humanity enriching the social and cultural life of the people of Kerala.

Recognizing his spiritual contributions Pope John Paul II beatified him at Kottayam on 8 February 1986. Later, he was canonized a saint at Saint Peter’s Square Rome by Pope Francis on 23 November 2014.

He played an important role in eradicating many of the social evils which were prevalent in our society during that time by spreading education. He established the first Catholic Sanskrit School in the year 1846 and set up the first printing press among the Syrian Catholics at Mannanam in 1844 We the people of Kerala owe much to St. Chavara for our State’s progress in the education sector in the past because it was he, who insisted in his capacity as the Vicar General of the Catholic Community to start a school along with every church (Palliyodoppam Pallikkoodam).

St. Kuriakose Elias Chavara had varied interests. He was a voracious reader, a powerful orator, a social reformer, a polyglot, a committed writer and an immaculate leader.

St. Kuriakose Elias Chavara had made an indelible mark in the field of literature also. He had composed many eclogues and the credit for composing the first short poetical composition named ‘Anasthasyaude Rakthasakshyam’   goes to St. Chavara. His masterpiece ‘Oru Nalla Appante Chavarul’ contains the gist of the moral values he upheld and reminds every human being about the importance of leading a pious and disciplined family life.

This great visionary who had lived before his time, left for his heavenly abode on January 3rd 1871. He was an embodiment of devotion, compassion and austerity; a true disciple of Jesus who equated service to the needy as service to God.

1805, February 10

Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara was born at Kainakary

1805, February 18

Baptized at Chennankary Church


Received the sub-diaconate


Received the diaconate

1829, Nov  29

Ordained priest by Arch Bishop Maurelius Stabilini

1831, May 11

Foundation of the first Indigenous Religious Congregation for Men (CMI) and first Monastry at Mannanam.


Started First Seminary at Mannanam


Started the first catholic Sanskrit School in Kerala


Started the first catholic printing press in Kerala

1855, December 8

Religious profession of the 11 Fathers, including Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara


Appointed the first Prior General of the Congregation

1861, June 8

Appointed as the Vicar General of the Syro-Malabar Church

1866, Feb 13

Foundation of the first Indigenous Congregation for Women (C.M.C.)

1871, January 3

The death of Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara at Koonammavu

1889, May 24

Mortal remains were transferred to Mannanam

1958, January 3

Began diocesan process for his beatification

1980, March 15

Formal introduction of cause by the Sacred Congregation

1984, April 7

Pope John Paul II elevated him to the status of Venerable

1986, February 8

Father Chavara is declared BLESSED by Pope John Paul II at Kottayam, Kerala

1987,December 20

The President of India, R Venkitaraman, released the postal stamp of Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara

2005, January 2

Celebrations of Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara Jayanti (200th birthday)

2015, November 23

His Holiness Pope Francis declared him Saint

Click here for Saint Chavara's Writings