“We are called to a community of love.” (Introduction, CMI Constitution). Wherever the members of the CMI Fraternity engage in effective and intense mission works, it is quiet intrinsic to their nature to live and be rooted in the cultural area and concrete context of activities for the purposes of inculturation and acclimatization. Since 2009, the year in which we began our mission in Periyakulam, our members started to stay here, though for a short time Fr. Issac was commuting from our Mary Matha School at Theni. Eventually and gradually our initial members stayed at the principal’s residence. This is a small house designed for the then JC College Principal’s residence. The CMIs has not changed their residence as well.
The members those who have been working here continue stay in the same facility except the fact that we changed its name to Anbakam, which comes from the Tamil words anbu and akam, that etymologically frames as anbakam – House of Love. We, the CMIs try our maximum to be inmates of the house of love by our loving care and cordial team-work. Starting from our age traditions, we try to be hospitable to everybody those who come to our Anbakam.
The gradual growth of our MMC college has its impact on the gradual growth of Anbakam as well. Our presence here stated with one person in the beginning. Gradually there were two CMIs living here in our Centre. As college got bigger and larger more and more CMIs were also required to stay and serve the society here. Moreover, our province has been sending CMI brothers to their degree studies here at MMC as well. If we see the different phases of the growth of Anbakam, it may look like the following:
Evolution of a Centre to a House:
As per the Constitution of the CMI Congregation, there four kinds of presences of CMI members in a place: 1. Centre, 2. Residence, 3. House, 4. Monastery. The process of raising the status of a place depends on the number of CMI members, financial self-reliance and the viability of the status. Recently, the provincial has sent the necessary documents to raise this Centre to the status of the House. Interestingly, CMI Centre is going to be raised to the status of House without being raised to the stage of a Residence. Now on the Prefect of the house will be elevated to the status of a Superior. Hence, Anbakam will a CMI House in the near future.