Chaithanya, the Pastoral Centre of the Archeparchy of Kottayam, to coordinate various pastoral and social activities for Knanaya Catholic Community and general public. It is the first Pastoral centre in Kerala. Chaithanya doing various activities like Pre-marriage courses, agricultural Nursery, Marriage bureau, social services etc.
History of Chaithanya:
Chaithanya Pastoral Centre started in 1977. It was the first Pastoral Centre in Kerala. The idea originated in the mind of His Excellency Bishop Mar Kuriakose Kunnacherry. An adhoc committee was formed in the month of January, 1978 itself, comprising of Rev. Fr. Jacob Vellian, Rev.Fr. Thomas Kottoor, Rev. Fr. Jacob Kollaparambil, Sr. Ansalam, Sr. Cyril, Mr. John Pullappally and Rev. Fr. Peter Uralil appointed as its president.
This committee held several meetings in the month of April 1978, at Sacred Heart Mount Boarding block, and prepared the constitution for the pastoral centre. The name to be given, was decided as ‘Chaithanya’ after active and serious discussions. It connoted the chief responsibility of the centre to bestow a renewed ‘Chaithanyam’ ie grace to one and all of the pastoral activities of the diocese. On September 23rd ,1978 by an order (No. 80B / 78), His Highness Mar Kuriakose Kunnacherry, approved the byelaw and the pastoral centre of the diocese was declared under the name ‘Chaithanya’. In general the aim of Chaithanya is “to organize and promote whatever would contribute to the renewal and progress of the people of God, particularly the Dioceses of Kottayam.”
In the initial stages, Chaithanya functioned in a small room of the Sacred Heart Mount Boarding house with a part time Director, a secretary and a typist. Lates in 1983, when the minor seminary of the Diocese moved into a new building, the whole of the old building was made available for the functioning of chaithanya. Here in this stage, Chaithanya started organizing camps, retreats and seminars.
In 1993, on February 24th, following the inauguration of the present new block of chaithanya to commemorate the Jubilee celebrations honouring Mar Kuriakose Kunnacherry services as a Bishop, Chaithanya Pastoral centre stepped into a new chapter of history.