St. Joseph's Church, Porulur

St. Joseph's Church, Porulur

Church Location

Rev.Fr. Jerlin SJ - The Parish Priest, St. Joseph's Church, Porulur P.o, Kallimandiam Via, Palani T.K- 624 616.


The long stretch of baren land, also known as “ Gounder Rajyam” of Kongu Nadu, between Palani to the south, Palladam, Kangayam to the north, was for long been barren not only agriculturally but also Evangelizationally. Except for some pockets like Dharapuram town and Chinna Dharapuram had very little Christian presence till 1948. Fr. Joseph Vattapalli of holy memory, started missionary work around the numerous villages of Gounders, within a radius of 20 miles of Dharapuram. Thus Porlur because one of the main mission centres. Fr. Vattapalli built a Chapel as early as 1949 for the neophytes. Porlur was one of the area, where the non - Christian Gounders, showed great interest in getting their children educated and eagerly grasped the opportunity offered by Fr. Vattapalli to admit their boys and girls in the new Boy’s and Girl’s Homes in 1953 at Dharapuram. Knowing the touchiness of the gounda caste towards the low castes, he wisely made these Homes exclusively for higher castes. Thus attracted, the parents of those children, gradually began to take interest in knowing about Christianity, so far, known as the religion of the low-castes, especially because of the earlier the Protestants missionaries, who were very active in this region had concentrated on the low-castes. Many of them, because of the close contact, with the priests and the Brothers of St. Michael, overcame their caste allergy and phobia, asked to be received into the church, thus began a sort of mass conversion of Goundas of the 20th century. In the 9” century, a Gounder of Kaumuthampatty area, had remarked to the French missionary. “You ought to have concentrated on evangelizing us, the Gounda caste first; if you had converted us, all these castes (sudhuras though) would have automatically flocked to you, as they are dependent on us for their livelihood”, seemed to have found an echo in Fr. Vattapalli, though a century after it was uttered.

It is certain that more than the material advantage of good education (there were hardly any high schools in this region ir those days), it must have been the personality of the frail man sofi - spoken, walking with an umbrella, in the sandy paths, highl) mortified, self - sacrificing, full of Christian charity that must have acted as a magnet to attract them. The zeal and self- sacrificing assistant priests of his, cycling on the dusty, sandy trails ( known as roads on those days) in the hot sun, against the wind which blows very hard in this area, (being just opposite of the Palghat pass), gladly and gratefully partaking of the (watery gruel of the left-over of cooked rice or millet of the previous day) or the tender- coconut if available in their garden, would surely added to their attraction, some of them, even blessed with the ability to converse with them, in their own peculiar slang. But with his early demise on 03.02.1964 aged 57 years, the tempo seem to have slowed down, to a trickle now, with many of the educated new converts, reverting back to their hindu religion, mainly because of matrimonial alliances, attracted by the rich dowry offered by the hindus. Frs. M. Thomas, Manthara, Marianathar, M.S. Michael, P. Irudayam and A. Soosai, tried hard to keep up the momentum.

Since, the Christian villages became numerous, though each village had only a handful of converts, the Dharapuram parish was divided into 2 and Porulur became a new parish on 15.09.1984. Fr. A. Soosai was the first parish priest of Porulur and took charge of the parish in 1984 at the age of 70. He was Parish Priest up to May 1994. During his Ministry, the main church was renovated by concrete roof, the church and alter were consecrated. He purchased eight acres of land at Porulur and constructed two houses, six shops and a community hall. He brought the Holy Cross Sisters and introduced the Health-care Center. He constructed two quarters (old and new) and a staff quarters. In all the sub­ stations he had purchased a land and constructed churches at Kodangipatty, Nineteen Pudur, Boduvarpatty, Vilvathampatty and Eskampatty. But after his retirement due to illness, from 1996 to 1998 and 2003 and 2004 it was attached to Dharapuram Fr. Oubagarasamy, Fr. Joseph Pragasam, Fr. R. Selvaraj were also parish priests here.

Main Station

Distance from the Cathedral Church : 115 Kms.

Total No. of Cathohc Families both in the Main & Sub- Stations : 95

Total No. of Catholic Families in the Main Station : 12

No. of Catholics in the Main station : 25

Mass Timings :

Weekdays : Mon, Thur, Sat 7.00 p.m

Tue, Wed, Fri 6.30 a.m

Sunday : 8.OO a.m

Religious Houses :

1. Holy Cross Convent


1. Joseph Heahh care center

PATRONAL FEAST : May 1st - The Feast of St. Joseph the Worker. SUB- STATIONS

1. Kodankipatty

Distance - 12 Kms.

Families - 10

No. of Catholics - 30

Mass Timings - Every Fri 7.00 p.m

2. 19 Puthur

Distance - 18 Kms.

Families - 5

No. of Catholics - 15

Mass Timings - Every 2nd Tue 7.00 p.m

3. Boduvarpatty

Distance - 12 Kms.

Families - 5

No. of Catholics - 10

Mass Timings - Wed 7.00 p.m

4. Vilvadampatty

Distance - 25 Kms.

Families - 2

No. of Catholics - 8

Mass Timings - 5th Tue 7.00 p.m

5. Puliampatty

Distance - 29 Kms.

Families - 45

No. of Catholics - 180

Mass Timings - 3rd Tue 7 p.m

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