The Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI) were founded in India by Kuriakose Elias Chavara, who was declared a saint, by Pope Francis on November 23, 2014. St. Chavara was born in Kerala on February 10, 1805. After his ordination to the priesthood he sought to revitalize the Christian life of Thomas Christians in India. With a group of diocesan priests he started a Community of Religious Men for the purpose of establishing a team of qualified priests who would be available to serve the Church without being in charge of the administration of a diocese or a parish.
St. Chavara was instrumental in founding two religious congregations. The Order for men, the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI), founded in 1831, numbers about 3000 members today and ministers in 30 different countries of the world. There are at present 108 CMI priests engaged in pastoral ministry in North America. The Order for women, the Congregation of the Mother of Carmel (CMC), founded in 1866, now has over 7000 sisters serving in numerous countries of the world.
St. Chavara established a seminary to give state-of-the-art training to young men at the Motherhouse at Mannanam – first of its kind in India. As the Vicar Apostolic for the Syro-Malabar Catholics, he took pioneering steps to establish schools with every parish church. St. Chavara provided care for the sick and destitute, especially the elderly. He had a special concern for families and was a strong promoter of devotional life for Catholics.
The CMIs have worked in several parishes of Hamilton Diocese. Presently they minister at Sacred Heart and Annunciation of Our Lord Parishes in Hamilton.
For more information visit: cmiusa.org/