Syro Malabar Mission, Adilabad
After protracted negotiations the three Syro- Malabar provinces received permission from General Curia in 2013 to start missionary activity in the Syro-Malabar dioceses with “exclusive territory.” There are nine such dioceses. So responding to the repeated requests of Bp. Joseph Kunnath of Adilabad diocese, St. Joseph Province sent Fr. Augustine Nattunilathu and Fr. Anish Varickanikkal in February and May 2014 respectively. Fr. Mathew Paikada joined the team in September 2014 and Fr. Antony Alphonse in June 2015. Fr. Amal Keeprath has joined the Capuchin community in June 2017. Chennur Mandal (Taluq) in entrusted to us for missionary and pastoral work. As we reached Chennur there was a small Catholic community of half dozen families, a CMC convent, a small church and an attached priest-room. We bought 4.25 acres of land and constructed a school and an Ashram on the Nizamabad-Jagadalpur highway (NH 63). The Assisi School started functioning in June 2016 and Assisi Bhavan was blessed on 20 March 2017. The Samaritan Sisters from Mannuthy, Thrissur are helping us in the school and they have built a convent cum hostel adjacent to the school premises and it was blessed on 3 May 2017. Now four sisters are serving the mission in Chennur.
Along with the development of the mission station at Chennur, we have been looking for a second foundation in the diocese of Adilabad. With the financial assistance of Pittsburg province we could purchase 1.25 acres of land at Tekumatla, in the Taluq (Mandal) of Jaipur in the district of Mancherial in Telangana State. Tekumatla village is ca, 40 KM from Chennur and convenient to reach through railways – 15 KM from Ramagundam and 15 KM from Mancherial. The foundation stone was laid on 19th March 2018 and the house was blessed on 16th March 2019 by Bishop Joseph Kunnath. Our house is named “SevaSadan”.
Responding to the repeated request of His Excellency Mar Ephrem Narikulam, the bishop of Chanda, the province decided to open a Capuchin Mission in the diocese of Chanda. Two friars from Pavanatma Province had served here for some time, but did not continue the service. Br. Augustine and Br. Mathew Paikada have been rendering spiritual service in Belharshah Cathedral and in the minor seminary from Chennur. After the legal formalities were satisfactorily met, Br. Augustine Nattunilathu reached Belharsha on 24th November 2017 and served in the parish of Darmapuri for about seven months. When Brs. Sharon Plakootam and DinnyKuruppassery reached on 11th June 2018, we were ready to take up a parish and the bishop entrusted to us temporarily the parish of Sumthana –Warora, with its two communities of faithful and two convents of St. Anne’s Sisters of Bangalore. The presbytery was renovated and blessed by Bp. Ephrem Narikulam on 18th June.