Home History Constitution Events Membership


Welcome to Knanaya Catholic Congress of Souther California. Stretching from Bakersfield in the north to San Diego in the south, from Oxnard in the west to San Bernardino in the east, encompassing all of southern California, Knanaya Catholic Congress of Los Angeles was formed in 1992 under the leadership of Fr. Abraham Mutholath. Mr. Thomas Parayankala is the founding president of the association.
KCCSC is a nonprofit organization of Knanaya Catholics in Los Angeles and surrounding cities. It is affiliated to Knanaya Catholic Congress of North America (KCCNA) and follows its directives. During the past decade and a half, the association was instrumental in fostering unity and closeness within the community. To this date, the association was spearheaded with volunteers and never been subject to any political rivalry.
The associationís name was changed to Knanaya Catholic Congress of Southern California in 2003 to reflect more meaningfully the wide geographical area encompassing its jurisdiction. Presently, Mr. Cyriac Chettiath is the president. The KCYL and Kids Club units actively participate in all our functions.
KCCSC Newly Elected Members for the Year 2006-2007

A Brief History of the Knanaya Community:

In the year 345 A.D., Knai Thomman, a rich international merchant, along with 72 families from Kinai (present day Middle East), belonging to East Syrian Church (Chaldean), migrated to the Malabar Coast (present day Kodungallor) and established their colony. In the group were also priests, deacons and a bishop. Knai Thomman and his people were welcomed by Cheraman Perumal, the Emperor, and were given permission to settle down in Kodungalloor. They built a town in Kodungalloor with a church and 72 houses. The natives called it Mahadevar Pattanam, meaning a town of superiors. Later, Cheraman Perumal bestowed on Knai Thommen and his people many princely privileges, which were recorded on copper plates (Cheppedu).

Knanaya Christians are the descendants of these Jewish Christian immigrants in Kerala. They were also called Southists (Thekkumbhagar) because they lived on the south side of Kodungalloor. The St.Thomas Christians (native Christians of Kerala) who lived on the north side of Kodungalloor were known as Northists (Vadakkumbhagar). Some historians state that Knananites are called Southists because they came from the southern kingdom of Judah.

Knanaya Christians are seen not only among the Catholics but also among the Orthodox Christians of Kerala, because when a group of Thomas Christians joined Jacobitism, among them there were Knanaya Christians too. They observe many rituals and traditions, which are very peculiar to their own community. Even today, the Knananites continue to be an endogamous community. In order to keep the purity of their race and ethnicity, they do not marry from outside their community.