The migrated Catholics from Kerala organized themselves under the banner of Kerala Catholic Association. Under this banner the liturgical service were conducted in Malayalam in all three rites, periodically in different parts of Pune, according to the availability of priests. Priests from different religious houses like CMI, Bethany Ashram, Papal Seminary, De Nobili College helped us in this.
Under the leadership and initiative of Rev. Fr. Gabinus Petta CMI, Rector of Carmel Vidya Bhavan, an organization “St. Thomas Christians of India” (STCI) was formed in 1982 to bring all Syro-Malabar Catholics under one umbrella. The formal inauguration of the STCI was held at Kirkee St. Ignatius Church in a well- attended meeting presided over by Rt. Rev. Valerian D’ Souza, Bishop of Pune, on 3rd July 1983. During this time, Fr. Gabinus used to visit all the faithful and offer Qurbana at different houses. The services of Rev. Fr. Joseph Valiyathazhathu, Rev. Fr. Joseph Muringayil, Rev. Fr. Joy Vallamkunnel and Rev. Fr, Freddy Eluvathingal during this period are to be remembered gratefully.
Rev. Fr. George Kavukattu MST and Rev. Fr. Lonappan Arangassery MST were chaplains to the Syro-Malabar Catholics of Pune on 9th June, 1984. Later, three more MST priests Rev. Fr. Peter Kavumpuram, Rev. Fr. Mathew Muthassery Rev. Fr. John Madukoly joined them. Rev. Fr. Peter Kavumpuram was appointed chaplain of Chinchwad and Dehu-road. Prior to the construction of the temporary structure at Akurdi, services were conducted at St. Xavier’s Church, Chinchwad. The Hall of Trinity School at Dattawadi (Akurdi) was also used as Qurbana Centre for several months.
St. Joseph’s Parish of Akurdi was established on the 1st of January 1990 with Rev. Fr. Jose Kalarickal MST as its first Parish Priest. A church (a temporary structure) was constructed on a plot of land purchased for this purpose in 1987 by Rev. Fr. Peter Kavumpuram, the then Chaplain of the Syro-Malabar community of Akurdi. St. Joseph’s Church was consecrated by Mar. Paul Chittilapilly on 19th March, 1990. Through the untiring efforts of Rev. Fr. Jose, all the faithful belonging to the Syro-Malabar rite were identified and made members of the new parish. Rev. Fr. Xavier Kadaplackal MST who succeeded Rev. Fr. Jose, strengthened the spiritual and socio-cultural fabric of the Syro-Malabar community at Akurdi. Rev. Fr. John Kizhakkarakkattu MST succeeded Fr. Xavier as the new Parish Priest. It was during his tenure that the present church and community hall and priest’s residence were constructed. The foundation stone was laid by Mar. Paul Chittilapilly, on 12th March, 1995. Work on the construction of the church building was inaugurated by Honourable MLA Shri Gajanan Babar on 4th May, 1995. The Church was blessed by Very. Rev. Msgr. Thomas Thalachira on 16th May 1996. The faithful of Akurdi remember Rev. Fr. John Kizhakkarakattu gratefully for the services rendered. In February 1997, Rev. Fr. Jose Valiyamangalam was appointed as Vicar. He was replaced by Rev. Fr. Joy Chitteth MST on May 20th 1998. He took keen interest to complete the remaining construction work without any delay. The church was consecrated on 24th April, 1998 by Mar. Thomas Elavanal. Rev. Fr. Martin Kombara succeeded Fr. Joy. It was he who beautified the church.
The following Priests have served the faithful of St. Joseph’s Church, Akurdi. Rev. Fr. Gabinus Petta CMI (Chaplain), Rev. Fr. Joy Vallamkunnel (Chaplain), Rev. Fr. Peter Kavumpuram (Chaplain), Rev. Fr. Jose Kalarickal (First Parish Priest), Rev. Fr. Xavier Kadaplackal MST, Rev. Fr. John Kizhakkarakattu MST, Rev. Fr. Jose Valiyamangalam MST, Rev. Fr. Joy Chitteth MST, Rev. Fr. Martin Kombara, Rev. Fr. Shaju Kottarathil, Rev. Fr. Anoop Poyyaniyil. At present Rev. Fr. Joseph Chalissery is the parish priest of St. Joseph Parish, Akurdi. The parish is a closely knit community of 160 families with about 760 members. It consists of 10 family units. On 14th March, 2010, the church was officially erected to the status of a full-fledged parish by Mar Thomas Elavanal. We remember with gratitude all the priests who contributed to build up the Parish to this status.
Parish Priest: Fr. Joseph (Lijo) Chalissery
Establishment of Parish Community: 01/01/1990
Official Erection as a Parish: 14/03/2010
Date of the Consecration of the Church: 24/04/1998
Area of the Church Property: 8000 sq. ft.
No. of Family’s: 160
No. of Family Units: 10
Address: St Joseph’s Church,Dhyaneshwar Colony,Near N. D. Towers,Akurdi, Pune. 411035
How to reach:
Holy Qurbana: Sun. 7.30 am & 6.30 pm at St. Joseph’s Church, Akrudi
Weekdays Qurbana: 6.30 pm at St. Joseph’s Church, Akrudi
Name of the Religious Congregation & Province: CMC, Thrissur Province
Type of the Institutions at parish territory: St. Joseph’s Play School & Nursery(Run by Parish)