Reading the signs of the time and
needs of the people the CMI missionaries under the leadership of Rev. Fr. John Berchmans
Kureeckal cmi of S.H Province Kalamassery, reached Karnataka in N.R Pura and started
the Mysore mission in the year 1954. This mission under the title “Mysore Region”
was formally entrusted to the Sacred Heart province, Kalamassery as its ‘Mission’
by the Rescript (Proto No. 586/59) from the Vatican on 8 May, 1959. The formal erection
of the region was in the year 1965. Rev. Fr. Cyprian Vithayathil was appointed as
the first Regional Superior with the mission head - quarters at Gonikoppal, South
Coorg. Rev. Fr. Regulus, Rev. Fr. Barnabas and Rev. Fr. Frederick were his successors
as Regional Superiors.
The geographical area of CMI St. Paul’s
Province, Mysore, covered the civil districts of Mysore, Mandya, Coorg, Hassan,
Chikkamagalur, Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Shimoga. In order to facilitate the mission
work of the district of Hassan, His Excellency Rt. Rev. Dr. Jacob Thoomkuzhy, the
then Bishop of Mananthavady, made a contract with Rev. Dr. Thomas Aykkara CMI, the
then Prior General of the CMI ( for the sake of then St. Paul’s Vice-Province of
the CMI, Mysore) on 19 April, 1981. They agreed through the contract ‘to handover’
to the CMI’s of St. Paul’s Province the district of Hassan ‘with full responsibility
for intensive and extensive evangelization of the people of the district and in
due time the Holy See may be pleased to erect it as a new eparchy or exarchate as
the case may be’ (Ref., Contract between Rt. Rev. Dr. Jacob Thoomkuzhy, the then
bishop of Mananthavady and Rev. Dr. Thomas Aykkara CMI, the then Prior General of
the CMI’s, no.1). After 29 years of this agreement we come to know formally on 18th
January 2010, when Mandya Eparchy (Diocese) was erected by the Synod of Bishops
of the Syro-Malabar Major Archiepiscopal Church and from the communication that
came in the media on that day given by the synod of Bishops of the Syro-Malabar
Major Archiepiscopal Church as well as of Vatican that the newly erected eparchy
of Mandya includes the civil districts of Mandya, Mysore, Chamarajanagar and Hassan
of Karnataka. We understand that it is in tune with the communication given to Rev.
Fr. Thomas Ayankudy CMI, the then Provincial of the CMI Mysore Province on 29 November
2004 by His Excellency Rt. Rev. Dr. Jose Porunnedam, the Bishop of Mananthavady
through his letter of erecting one eparchy comprising of the four districts of Hassan,
Mandya, Mysore, Chamarajnagar. None of these districts alone was found to be large
enough, in terms of especially the faithful, to erect separate eparchies ( Ref.
Port. No. 1211/2004).
Considering the remarkable progress of
the mission activities in this region, the 30th General Synaxis held on May 2, 1978
elevated this mission region to the status of a Vice-Province placing under the
patronage of St. Paul, having Carmel Bhavan as its Provincial headquarters. Rev.
Fr. Fredreick was appointed as the first provincial. Fathers who served the vice-province
as Provincials were-
Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Fredrick Mundathanath
Rev. Fr. Gabinus Petta (1984-1987),
Rev. Fr. Thomas Kunianthodath (1987-1990
Rev. Fr. Joseph Angadiath (1990-1993),
Rev. Fr. Thomas Joseph Vithayathil (1993-1996)
Rev. Fr. George Kalambukatt (1996-1999).
The 35th Ordinary General Synaxis of
the Congregation held in Bangalore raised the Vice-Province to the status of a full-fledged-province
on the 9th of April 2002. Since then,
Thomas Ayankudy (2002 – 2005),
Antony Sebastian Moolamattam (2005 – 2008) ,
Varghese Koluthara (2008 - 2011) served as the provincials.
Rathappillil Joseph is the present provincial (2011-2014)
Members of the Province are engaged in
various fields of apostolic activities like – Education, Pastoral care, Preaching
the Word of God, Working for the up-liftment of the poor, Imparting basic and advanced
education, medical care, serving the sick and the dying and in organising the youth.
Pastoral care is given to the Christian faithful through catechetical training and
administration of the sacraments. People of other religions around the parish and
our houses are helped in times of their need. We do guide them to grow in love and
fraternity, to become good citizens in helping the nation building process. Province
has been taking up new missionary ventures abroad, other parts of Karnataka and
other parts of India as a creative response to the Global mission initiatives of
the CMI congregation in tune with the thinking of the XXXVI general Synaxis.