The Malankara Catholic Mission of Chicago also celebrated the silver jubilee of its establishment in 2008 as did the Ecumenical Council of Kerala Churches in Chicago. In this brief history of the mission I acknowledge the abundance of God’s blessings since this faith community’s inception. Many are the blessings that we received during these 25 years: a vibrant and caring community of 65 families, a group of passionate youth, faithful to the Malankara heritage and culture, establishment of a convent, a young member’s entrance to the seminary, to name a few! I compare the parish’s journey of 25 years with the different stages of human development: Childhood, teenage and young adult.

Childhood to Teenage

During late sixties and early seventies, when the United States opened its door to the people of India, the scattered minority of Malankara people had to work hard to foster their culture, faith and liturgical traditions as any immigrant community does. As a pioneer the late John Mathai’s role is worth mentioning in the context of the Malankara community. His painstaking efforts brought the scattered faithful together in its initial stage. Church

further addressed this critical need with the appointment of Fr. Ninan Tharakan, who was a doctoral student at the University of Notre Dame. I consider this time as the childhood, when the community faced the challenges of Infancy and early childhood. As a child gets food and nourishment, the infant community enjoyed spiritual food and nutrition in memorial masses and other sacraments in private houses and local parishes. From 1982 Rev.

Dr. Ninan Tharakan, the pioneering director often traveled all the way from Norte Dame to provide pastoral assistance to this community in its infancy. Teenagers wander a lot in search of the things make sense to them. During the wandering stage of the church, Fr. Jerome Peedikaparambil OIC, was appointed in 1986 as the first resident priest. The first batch of the second generation recollects the joyful days with Fr. Jerome, how the love for liturgy was instilled in the life of the growing children. Although there was no permanent space of worship during those years arrangements were made for the liturgical celebration on a regular basis in semi permanent facilities at local parishes. Fr. Jerome’s direct interaction enabled the younger generation to learn more about Malankara faith and culture.

Young Adulthood

The dream of a permanent place of worship came true in the parish’s young adult time. Community began to stabilize under the leadership of Fr. William Nedumpurath OIC. As a result of his vision, dedication and hard work we were able to acquire the current place of worship in 1994. The third Malankara Convention during his time provided an additional contribution in the making of this community more visible. Subsequently Fr. Zacharias

Nanthiatt OIC served in the second half of the young adulthood. Fr. P.T. Thomas,  Chorbishop Geevarghese Mannikarott, Fr. Thomas Vattaparambil, Fr. John Thundiyath also provided their pastoral role in this stage of development.

 Adulthood: Growth and Stability

I consider the past five years is a time of growth to adulthood. Starting of a Bethany Convent in 2007 gave a new dimension to our pastoral work. The sisters’ special attention to the altar, Sunday school and mothers in addition to the common activities

gives a greater level formation to the parish. Lintu Markose, one of our members entrance to the seminary in 2008 during the jubilee year is a visible sign of our spiritual growth. I pray to continue in this momentum and hope for better results. As we acknowledge the many divine blessings we are also indebted to the Malankara hierarchy for its shepherding and the archdiocese of Chicago for the fabulous support and assistance in our faith journey.

 

1208 Ashland Ave,  Evanston, IL 60202

www.chicagomalankara.org

Upcoming Events

  • Harmony Festival: Sep 12,
    at 9 AM at Syro Malabar
    Auditorium.  

    Address
    5000 Saint Charles Rd,
    Bellwood, IL, 60104



  • Flyer

  • Registration Form