St. Antony’s Church – Kamarajapuram, Chennai.
Kamarajapuram is an urban parish in the Diocese of Chengalpat and is situated in Kancheepuram district and is about 28 kms away from Chennai. The entire area of Kamarajapuram is a quarry area when it was taken up by sss Religious and the inhabitants are those who had largely migrated from the southern districts of Tamilnadu. There are about 3000 families living in Kamarajapuram of whom about 20% are catholic Christians.
Kamarajapuram was a sub-centre of Pallavaram parish until the SSS established their presence in the area. Fr. B. Arputha Raj sss discovered this centre when he was assisting the Parish priest of Pallavaram and was installed the Parish Priest of Kamarajapuram in the presence of Fr Philip Mannathare, the then Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Madras-Mylapore on 27 Feb. 1992. This marks the beginning of sss pastoral ministry in India. Eventually the contract making it into a full-fledged sss parish was signed by the Archbishop of the Diocese, Most Rev. Casimir Gnanadickam sj and Fr. Joseph Geran sss the then Provincial of the Australian Province in August 1992. In 1994, Fr. Albert sss and Jegaraj sss joined Fr. B. Arputha Raj sss, thus forming a religious community in the parish.
The place witnessed rapid development and importance was given to education and social welfare activities. A decent residence for the community was built in 1995 and was blessed and inaugurated by His Grace Dr. Arul Das James, the Archbishop of Madras-Mylapore on 15 Feb 1995.
Fr. Sebastian took over from 30 June 1997 and the thrust of sss mission continued to flourish in the parish. The first ever Ordination took place at Kamarajapuram when Deacon Rosario sss was ordained a Priest by Most Rev. Arul Das James on 09 May 1998. The newly constructed and beautifully designed church dedicated to St. Antony was solemnly blessed on 18 June 2001 by Rev Dr Arul Das James. On 26 Feb 2002, the parish celebrated the ‘Tin Jubilee’ – 10 years of sss presecnce in Kamarajapuram and to commemorate the occasion, an Adoration Chapel named ‘Amaithi Solai’ was blessed by Fr. Sesuraj sss, the Regional Superior.
Eucharistic Evangelisation and Education have been the top mission priorities in the parish and the hard work of all our sss Religious – Frs. B. Arputha Raj, Albert Rethinam, Arul Tharcius, Sebastian, Johnson along with many scholastics is beginning to bear fruit. The recently formed Basic Christian Communities ‘Anbiyam’ (BCC) and the first ever parish council are concrete expressions of the Eucharistic mission in the Parish. Then the community was formed by Fr. Sebastian and Regent Philip Benzi.
After first Parish Priest to the present date number of SSS personnel contributed their hard labour to the fast development of the parish. Fr. Sebastine SSS, Fr. Jesuraj SSS, Fr. Nathan SSS, Fr. Johnson Britto SSS, Fr. Peter Fernandez SSS, Fr. Ravi Earnest SSS, Fr. B. Arputha Raj SSS, and Fr. Jegaraj SSS
Parish ministry is mainly focused on Evangelization and service to the people and their spiritual needs. The education of the poor children is also given important through the education ministry in the parish. The Eucharistic spirituality is promoted through the involvement of the Lay aggregates in the parish life style.
School ministry is one of the special ministries that are done in this parish. The parish team gives more important to the formation of the people through the organization of BCC. The special adoration service on every second Friday night of the month has been added as the spiritual growth for the parish people. Every 1st Tuesday of the month I dedicated to St Antony, the patron saint of the parish.
Presently, Fr. Julian – Superior, PP & Correspondent of School and Fr. Inbaraj sss Asst. pp are the members serving the Parish.
Fr. Julian SSS
Parish Priest & Superior
Fr. Inbaraj SSS
Asst. Parish Priest & Administartor