Interviews and Performances - Video List
AP 120 to 111

Who is the real founder of the CMI Congregation ? The INCONVENIENT TRUTH.

This image for Image Layouts addon
AP 120 - Who is the real founder of the CMI Congregation ? The INCONVENIENT TRUTH.
Call Number

AP 120

Part Number Part I - Syro Malabar Church
Title Who is the real founder of the CMI Congregation ? The INCONVENIENT TRUTH.
Duration 12:55
Place of Recording Beth Aprem Nazrani Dayra, Kuravilangad
Date of Recording August 3, 2014
Youtube URL
Video Segment (s)



Who is the real founder of the CMI Congregation ? The INCONVENIENT TRUTH

Dr. Thomas Konnammakkal, an intellectually honest scholar and philosopher, argues that Palackal Thoma Malpan (1780-1841) is the founder of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI). Fr. Koonammakkal builds his thesis on a key phrase from the Chronicles of Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara (1805-1871) കൊവേന്തയുടെ തുടക്കം (Malayalam, “the starting/founder of the Monastery/Congregation”), in reference to Palackal Thoma Malpan. Thoma Malpan was Saint Chavara’s preceptor at the Seminary at Pallippuram. The most important duty of the preceptor in those days was to teach Syriac language and liturgy. The teaching of scripture, theology, and philosophy went along with it. Saint Chavara held his guru in high esteem. The saintly Thoma Malpan, in turn, treated his precocious protégé like an adopted son. St. Chavara came to the family of Thoma Malpan at the age of 12 and joined the seminary at the age of thirteen. After priestly ordination, St, Chavara assisted in realizing the long-cherished dream of his venerable guru to establish an indigenous religious Congregation for men among the St. Thomas Catholics who, at that time, were under the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of foreign prelates of the Roman Catholic Church. During his later years, St. Chavara, who became a Malpan (teacher/scholar of the Syriac language) and poet in the Malayalam language, decided to write a chronicle of events in his life and that of the Congregation. Following the advice of his spiritual father, a foreign missionary, Saint Chavara incorporated a biography of his guru in the Chronicle. The phrase mentioned above appears in the final paragraph of the bio where the author describes the death and burial of Palackal Malpan. St. Chavara unequivocally acknowledges that his guru is the founder of the religious congregation of which he became the very first professed member and superior. In this video, Fr. Koonammakkal challenges the superiors of the CMI congregation to revisit the history with greater intellectual honesty and integrity. See also Aramaic Project-106

Joseph J. Palackal, CMI
New York
13 February 2019

Related Videos

  • AP 112 - The Two Founders of the CMI Congregation?
  • ****************
  • AP 16 - Interview with Koonammakkal Thoma Kathanar.
  • AP 16a – Koonammakkal Thoma Kathanar becomes emotional while speaking about the contributions of Fr. Emmanuel Thelly, CMI (1925-2015) and the failure from the part of the Syro Malabar Church to "recognize the face of a scholar."
  • AP 16c – Etymology of the word "Aramaic." Koonammakkal Thoma Kathanar
  • AP 16d – What is the Etymology of the word " Chaldaya." Koonammakkal Thoma Kathanar
  • AP 16f – Koonammakal Thoma Kathanar about the library at Beth Aprem Nazrani Dayra
  • AP 28 -The pronunciation of Syriac in Kerala and Iraq.
  • AP 218 - Fr. Emmanuel Thelly, CMI, A Servant of the Syro Malabar Church.
  • AP 219 - Koonammakkal Thoma Kathanar on the beauty of the Syriac language and music.
  • AP 221 - A Catechism Class on St. Ephrem the Syrian. Koonammakkal Thoma Kathanar.
  • AP 308 - Prof. Sebastian Brock pays tribute to Rev. Dr. Thomas Koonammakkal Part-1
  • AP 309 - Prof. Sebastian Brock on Dr. Koonammakkal's Contribution to Syriac studies in India

Print   Email