The evil eye- what is that? Is it a demon?


The evil eye is not a specific demon but a quality that makes human beings demonic.In many cultures people who are thought to have the ability to cast the evil eye are greatly feared and various amulets are worn to protect people from their evil power: Even the Jewish Talmud, compiled between 200 and 500 CE, recommends wearing a little scroll of the priestly blessing from Numbers 6:24-26 around one’s neck as a protection against the evil eye.

In the Bible evil is the sin of envy.the envious person sees the prosperity of others and strikes them with the evil eye.In Jesus’s story about the labourers in the vineyard, those who worked the whole day are envious of those who worked only an hour and received the same pay.The vineyard owner asks them:”is your eye evil [i.e., envious]  because I am generous?” ( Matt 20:15). So in Jesus list of the evils that come from the human heart, the evil eye is often translated as “envy” (see Mark 7:22).But while those who have too little are prone to envy, there is a corresponding affliction in those who have much. What they have is never enough, so the evil eye in them is greed and miserliness. The law warns the people not to be greedy (to have an evil eye) in their actions toward the poor in the sabbatical year when they are supposed to forgive all debts (Deut 15:9). If they are stingy and neglect to do this, God will hear the cry of the poor and punish the greedy. Tobit gives a similar warning to his son Tobiah: “Give alms from your possessions and do not let your eye begrudge the gift when you make it” (Tob 4:7, 16).

The Book of Proverbs even warns against eating with an evil-eyed person; his stinginess will make the food indigestible (Prov 23:6-8). Such people are so greedy that they are stingy with themselves, not only refusing to give to their neighbors but also neglecting themselves (Sir 14:8-10).This effect of the evil eye is described as devouring one’s own flesh. When the people are attacked and besieged by their enemies, even the most refined among them will devour their own children and will have an evil eye against their surviving loved ones, snatching even this horrible food away from them (Deut 28:54-56). The evil eye is truly demonic!

St Basil, a fourth-century doctor of the Church, wrote a homily against the evil eye of envy and greed. He declares that demons use this evil eye for their own purposes. He warns that envy, not only of someone’s wealth but even of the wisdom and virtues of others, is demonic. The cure for this is to become honorable ourselves: doing good, a with justice, enduring with patience. The acquisition of n virtue is Basil’s defense against the evil eye.

This Excerpt is taken from the book: Some-Outstanding Women of India. Order Now!!!

101 Question and Answers on Angels and Devils Cover


Devasagayam Pillai, Servant of God.

Untitled design (3).png

Lay Apostle and Martyr (1712-1752).


Devasagayam was born at Nattalam, near Nargercoil, Tamil Nadu, (India), in 1712 in a Hindu Nair family and his full name was Nilakandan pillai.History does not give any clear information about his parentage.It is common;ly believed that his father belonged to a Potti-Brahmin or Nair caste of Travancore.It is fairly certain that he was the scion of a rather well-to-do family and enjoyed a high social status.

Young Nilakandan had his primary education in his village school where he learned Malayalam, Tamil and sanskrit.being an intelligent youngster, he studied Hindu philosophy, especially the Upanishads. He was trained also in martial arts. Although he had inherited great wealth, he did not have the pomp and show usually associated with the rich. His own servants and the needy of the area always found in him a friend and benefactor. In due time he married a young Nair girl, Bhargavi Amma. Their married life was quite happy.

Disaster struck Neelakandan’s family in tragic events like sickness, loss of property, money etc. All his cattle were destroyed and natural calamities took away some of his relatives. They were convinced that it was all due to the anger of God and hence offered special pujas (Sacrifice) to placate the anger of the gods and goddesses. But Neelakandan found no peace in his mind. King Marthanda Varma of Travancore made him his minister and asked him to supervise the work and act as the trustee of the new temple which was dedicated to god Neelakanda Swami. The minister put his heart and soul into the work and did it with exceptional dedication and honesty.

India had commercial relationship with the Middle East as well as East Asian countries. Hence many commercial centres came up in the coastal region. The Dutch wanted to capture some of them and in 1741 they attacked Eraniyal, one of the most important commercial centres. King Marthanda Varma rose to the occasion and in the ensuing battle the Dutch lost at Colachal.

Neelakandan Pillai was introduced to the Catholic faith by Eustachius de Lannoy, a Dutch military officer, apprehended as a prisoner by King Marthanda Varma during the Colachal war. Subsequently Marthanda Varma took De Lannoy into his army and, with his help, modernized his army.

In 1745 Nilakandan Pillai was baptized by Fr Giovanni Baptista Buttari, sj, the parish priest of Holy Family Church, Vadakkankulam. His baptismal name was Devasagayam (Tamil rendering of the biblical name Lazarus, which means, God’s help). From then on, he walked 18 miles every day to attend the Holy Mass. He prayed for the conversion of his wife. After a period of doubt and hesitation she too received baptism from Fr Baptista Buttari and was christened Theresa (Tamil: Gnanappu).

Around this time, a persecution broke out against the Christians and a few Christians gave up their life for Christ and thus became martyrs. However, Devasagayam Pillai survived. He refused to perform the duties of his former faith and freely mixed with the Christians, who were considered as untouchables and unclean. This was a grave offence in Travancore. To add to this the new Christians started preaching the Christian faith and many became Christians. On 23 February 1749, Devasagayam Pillai was arrested and was taken to the court where Brahmins accused him of blasphemy against the Hindu gods. For these offences the king Marthanda Varma gave order to shoot him. He was shot dead on 14 January 1752 at Kattradimalai (now Devasagayam mount) after three years of imprisonment and cruel torture, which he bore with firm faith, deep love and great courage for Christ. Devasagayam Pillai was 40 years old at the time of his martyrdom. He had lived as a Christian only for seven years and three of these, he had to undergo constant persecution. After his death, the soldiers threw his body in the open for dogs to eat. But the body remained untouched for seven days. Some merchants found the revered body of Devasagayam Pillai and informed the parish priest of Kottar, Tamil Nadu. The parish priest with the help of some of the faithful buried him in front of the main altar of St Francis Xavier’s Church, Kottar.

The people of the locality always considered him a true and authentic martyr and often visited his tomb and received many favours through his intercession. At the request of people and clergy some attempts were made in the second half of the eighteenth century to introduce his cause of canonization. Unfortunately, the documents were lost in transit but nothing came out of it. Later, through the initiative of bishop Arockiasamy, then bishop of Kottar, the process of canonization of Devasagayam Pillai has been taken up. On 7 September 2008 Devasagayam Pillai was declared a Servant of God during a Solemn Mass held at St Francis Xavier’s Cathedral Church,Kottar.

“Why should I run away like a coward? Is it not a grace to become a martyr? If Christ gave his life for my sake, why should I not give mine for Him?”

“O Jesus, my Saviour, You suffered in order to save mankind; forgive my sins and forgivce my enemies.Jesus, I offer myself totally to you.Mary my Mother, intercede for me.”  -Last prayer of Devsagayam before his martyrdom.

This excerpt is taken from the book: Fragrances of Holiness in India. Available here.

Untitled design (1)

Saint Euphrasia Eluvathingal


Rose was born as the first child of Antony Eluvanthingal Cherpukaran and Kunjethy Chalissery, on17 October 1877 at Edathuruthy, near Trichur, Kerala, (India). As the eldest child, Rose was the darling of everyone, When she grew up she made a total self-surrender to God.But once when she mentioned,”I want to be a nun,” the hopes and aspirations of her father were all of sudden shattered and received fierce and forbidding looks and was blamed for her stubbornness.But she had a mind of her own and would not budge.” I made the vow of chastity at the age of nine, I must and will fulfill that solemn promise”, she said Girls’ education in those days was quite neglected and was generally only up to the 3rd or 4th standard. In most cases, it meant only learning the rudiments of reading and writing. But candidates to the religious life had to undergo elaborate training in a boarding school at their tender age. The discipline of the boarding school would serve as a test of their aptitude for the religious life.

Rose entered the boarding school attached to the Carmelite convent at Koonammavu, near Ernakulam, in 1866. Young Rose loved her life in the boarding school. Learning of Christian doctrine and prayer had a prominent place in their training.

Rose joined the Congregation of Mother Carmel (CMC) in 1896 at Ambazhakad. On 9 May 1897, Rose became a postulant and received the religious veil of the Congregation. And she also took a new name, Sr Euphrasia of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. In 1897 she had a severe attack of rheumatism. However, she was cured of the illness and resumed her duties without allowing herself any exception. On 10 January 1898, she received her religious habit. Along with her sacrifices, incessant prayers, sufferings and bodily ailments, she also experienced the devil’s powerful temptations, criticisms, rash judgments, and misunderstanding. She suffered a veritable martyrdom for the holy souls in purgatory and for the conversion of sinners.

On 24 May 1900, Sr Euphrasia made her religious profession at the Carmelite convent, 011ur, near Trichur. After her profession, Sr Euphrasia was assigned to help the novice mistress and the infirmarian. She had a special inclination to do very humble duties since she saw in them God’s will. As she was sickly and weak she was sent to Ambazhakad for a short period of rest. Illness became her constant companion. She fell a victim to fever and felt severe pain all over her body. Although there seemed to be no hope of complete recovery, she returned to 011ur and resumed her work.

In May 1904 Sr Euphrasia was appointed as novice mistress and continued in that office for nine years. All saw in her an exemplary religious. She exacted meticulous observance of the rules from her novices and was even criticized for being too strict. Later on, she had to suffer much from those who resented her corrections. She wrote to her spiritual director, bishop John Menachery: “I derive immense benefit when I hear anyone speak ill of me. My soul has learnt how to turn every incident into good.” In painful situations, she ran to the Eucharistic Lord and the Blessed Mother for comfort and consolation.
In 1913, she was appointed superior of the Carmelite convent at 011ur, which proved to be for her a martyrdom. But she herself was a living example of observance of the Rule. Though the convent was not financially sound, she saw to it that the Sisters received wholesome food an care. She had a special knack of caring for the sick.

Mother Euphrasia ceased being the Superior in 1916 but continued to stay in the same convent. Slowly her health started deteriorating. She became extremely weak due to a paralytic stroke. She spent hours and hours before the Blessed Sacrament in the Church immersed in prayer and praying the rosary. She had an extraordinary devotion to the passion of Our Lord. She used to say to the visitors: “Gazing at the crucifix, shedding tears of compassion and praying have become the main occupation of my life.”

It was with the utmost eagerness that Sr Euphrasia waited for her end. Even when she had to bear her infirmities of old age, there was no sagging in her zeal. On 26 August 1952, she made her confession for the last time to Fr Louis, cmi. She was paralyzed and being unable to speak, she wrote on a piece of paper, “give me the last sacrament,” which was administered without delay. Sr Euphrasia passed away on 29 August 1952 at the age of 75.

After her death, many miracles took place through her intercession and the cause of her canonization started in 1987. She was declared a Servant of God on 22 October 1988. On 3 December 2006, she was beatified by Cardinal Varkey Vithayathil, the Major Archbishop of Syro-Malabar Church, at 0llur.

Jesus was the supreme reality in the life of Blessed Euphrasia and she found meaning and value of her life only in her relationship with him. She wrote to her spiritual director: “When I think of the sufferings of the Lord who shed his blood and died on the cross, I feel that a day without any suffering is empty; please pray to God and obtain for me some suffering.”

This excerpt is taken from the book: Fragrances of Holiness in India. Available here.Untitled design (1)

History of the San Thome Church.



Theodore, a sixth-century visitor from Europe, spoke of the San Thome church as “a church of striking dimensions, elaborately adorned and designed”.

Pilgrims from England, sent by King Alfred, seem to have visited it in the year 883.The world-renowned traveler from Italy, Marco Polo, traveled here in 1292 A.D. and speaks of it in his journals.

There are reports on this church by Oderic of Pordenone(Papal Legate) in 1325, by John De Marignolli in 1349, Nicolo de Conti, another Italian visitor, between 1425 and 1430.

A certain Joseph, from Cranganore, went to Italy and Portugal in 1501.After seeing the splendid churches of Venice, he said that the San Thome Church was comparable in splendor to the church of St John and St Paul in Venice.

However, when the Portuguese arrived in Mylapore, they found the San Thome Church in ruins, except for the small chapel, which contained the tomb of St Thomas.They rebuilt the church in 1523.

In 1893, under Bishop Henrique Jose read De Silva of Mylapore, this structure was demolished and the magnificent ‘Gothic’ church was built.The tomb of St Thomas is at the heart of the structure.

The blessing of the church took place on 1 April 1896 and Bishop A.S. Valente, Patriarch of the East Indies consecrated the main altar.In 1956 the church was declared a Minor Basilica.In the Basilica stands an ancient statue of Our Blessed Mother, Mary.The three-foot-high statue is called “Mylai Matha’ in Tamil or our Lady of Mylapore in England.It was before this statue that the world famous missionary, St Francis Xavier, whose body is exposed for veneration in Goa, used to pray, during his four months’ stay in Mylapore in 1545.

The basilica consists of two structure, the tomb chapel below the Basilica and the Museum-cum-theatre.The new underground chapel, with a separate access outside the church structure, allows pilgrims to pray at the tomb and tourists to visit it without disturbing the functions of the church.

The museum exhibits artifacts connected with St Thomas and the Basilica, and the theatre screens a short video on the life of the Apostle.

For more details information about the Church, Order your copy now.

A close look at the person and personality of St Thomas the Apostle

“The Seven Churches” Founded by St Thomas.

Of the seven churches founded by St Thomas in Kerala, 2000 years ago, Kondungallur and Kollam Churches in the Sea Port cities, were destroyed the ports.New churches were established on the beaches subsequently.The church of Niranam, Playaur and Kottakavu/Paravur still exist at the same sites after renovation.The Nilackal Church has now come up at an alternate location.The church here was destroyed in the civil war of 1314 A.D.


1.Kondungallur:(Cradle of Christianity in India).





3.Kottakav (Paravur)



4.Kokkamangalam-Cross Menhir



5.St Mary’s Orthodox Syrian Church Niranam




6.St Thomas and St Francis Xavier Kollam




7.St Thomas Church, Nilackal.




Location of the Church in Kerala

A close look at the person and personality of St Thomas the Apostle

For more details information about the Church, Order your copy now.