Fr. Abel Periyappuram, C.M.I.

ഫാദർ ആബേൽ പെരിയപ്പുറം , സി. എം. ഐ.

(Fr. Abel in his office at Kalabhavan Studio, Kochi during the recording of Syriac melodies
and their Malayalam translations from the liturgy of the
Syro-Malabar Church for the research of Joseph J. Palackal in Dec 1997.)
Photo taken by : K. S. Prasad

Benediction - Booklet (Malayalam)
പരിശുദ്ധ കുർബാനയുടെ വാഴ്വ്

This booklet is a precious relic from the past. It comes from the transitional period in the history of the Syro Malabar liturgy in Kerala in the 1960s. The Syro Malabar Church introduced the Malayalam version of Qurbana in 1962. The Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, however, continued to be celebrated in Syriac. Fr. Abel Periyapuram, CMI (1920-2001) prepared a Malayalam version of the text and ritual for Benediction in 1968. What we see here is the digital version of the first edition of a 16-page booklet (10.5 cms x 7.2 cms) with the songs, prayers and the ritual for Benediction. Fr. Abel gave the title in Malayalam as Parišuddha qurbānyuṭe wāzhwu (Blessing of the Holy Qurbana).

There are five songs in the booklet. Fr. Abel did not make a verbatim translation of the original Latin text or their Syriac translations (See Aramaic Project-126,) but used them only as a reference. There is one exception. The second song, Akhila lōka nāyakā (Lord of all the world, p.3) is a faithful translation of the Resurrection Hymn (Lāku mārā) from the Eucharistic liturgy in Syriac. The Syriac version of the Benediction, however, did not include this chant. It was Fr. Abel's decision to incorporate this chant as part of the incensing the Monstrance. The third song (p. 11), Swargathil ninnāgathamām (That which came from Heaven), Fr. Abel uses the famous Latin chant, Tantum Ergo, as a source of inspiration. The fourth song, Parišuddha šarīrathālum (By the Holy Body, p. 12), is a free translation of the prayer in Latin, Panem de caelo. In contrast, the final song, Daiwathe wāzhthiṭuwin (pp. 14-15), is a close translation of the final hymn, Laudes Divine (the Divine Praises), in the Latin version of the Benediction. Overall, the prayers and chants of the Malayalam version of the Benediction are Fr. Abel’s free creation.

Fr. Abel employed Shri K. K. Antony (1924-1987), Music Director of Kalabhavan, to compose melodies for the five songs. Antony Master composed songs in the style of popular movie-songs in Malayalam and recorded them with instrumental accompaniment on a spool tape and made them available to the church choirs across Kerala. In the following year (1969), Fr. Abel asked the talented composer, Rafi Jose, to compose a different set of melodies for these songs and included a musical transcription Rafi’s melodies in staff notation in the book Gānādhyāpakan.

Cardinal Joseph Parecattil (1912-1987) gave imprimatur, ad experimentum, to the booklet on 10 August 1968. The songs and the ritual became instantly popular, and continue to the present day, all over the Syro Malabar communities. No one has attempted to create a different version of the Malayalam text yet.

Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament is one of the paraliturgical practices in the Latin rite that the Portuguese missionaries introduced among the Catholics in Kerala in the sixteenth century. The Syro Malabar Catholics refused to use the original chants in Latin. Instead, they translated the chants into Syriac and continued to use the Syriac version until 1968. So the history of this pious paraliturgical practice extends over several centuries and multiple countries and their respective cultures.

If my memory serves me right, Fr. Joseph Kunthara, CMI, gave me this booklet in 1968. Fr. Kunthara, who was a friend of Fr. Abel, was also a musically talented person and a promoter of Christian music. I was a student at the St. Joseph’s Postulant’s Home at Kalamassery. We, the choir members, used copies of this booklet to sing for benediction almost every Sunday as well as special occasions at the Sacred Heart Provincial House chapel. Subsequently, we memorized the songs and did not need the booklet. For some reason, I held on to this copy during all these years of my sojourn in various parts of India and the USA. I plan to give the hard copy to Felix Simon for safe keep. He is free to hand it over to the Library of Congress at some point in time. I dedicate the digital version of this copy to future historians of the music of the Syro Malabar Catholics.

Joseph J. Palackal, CMI
New York
6 January 2020

Publication Details

Benediction - Booklet (Malayalam)
പരിശുദ്ധ കുർബാനയുടെ വാഴ്വ്

Prepared by - Fr. Abel, CMI

Publication Details
  • Booklet Title-പരിശുദ്ധ കുർബാനയുടെ വാഴ്വ്
    Benediction –Booklet (Malayalam)
  • Booklet size - 10.5 cms x 7.2 cms
  • Pages - 16
  • Year of publication -1968
  • Imprimatur Ad experimentum - By Cardinal Joseph Parecattil
  • Printed at -Mar Louis Memorial Press
  • Key words - Benediction – Malayalam , Fr. Abel, CMI , Benediction Tantum ergo ,
    Panem de caelo , Laudes divine

(Pdf Download)

Resource Code : 008-181

Speaking and singing voice of Fr. Abel

List of Syriac Chants from Qambel Māran - CD sung byFr. Abel Periyapuram
# Track # Aramaic Project Code

Syriac Chant
title and link

Duration Category

Encyclopedia Page of the Syriac chant

CMSI Ref. No.

1 11 009-4J O dezdamman īnja O you who are invited 1:32 Raza 101-0011 Fr. Abel Periyappuram C.M.I. & Lonappan Arackal.
Triangle: Lonappan Arackal
2 14 009-4M Qambel māran Accept, O Lord 4:52 Services for the Dead 101-0014 Fr. Abel Periyappuram C.M.I. (celebrant)

List of songs by Fr. Abel Periyapuram used for research by Dr. Joseph J. Palackal
# Aramaic project Code Description Youtube Link
1. 009-11

Fr. Abel Periyapuram, C. M. I. sings Syriac melodies and their Malayalam translations from the liturgy of the Syro-Malabar Church for the research of Joseph J. Palackal. Recorded at Kalabhavan Studio in Dec 1997.

Complete List of Aramaic Project 11 Segments (11.1 to 11.26)

Note on Aramaic Project-11: Here is a sound testimony to a glorious past in the history of the Syro Malabar Church. Fr. Abel, who played a significant role in the transition of the Syriac liturgy into Malayalam, in the 1960s, sings the model melodies he chose for the liturgy of the Hours in Malayalam. Fr. Abel recorded these melodies in his own voice at my request. I wanted to study these melodies for my doctoral dissertation at the City University of New York (2005). Transcription of these model melodies is part of Chapter six in my doctoral dissertation. In this recording, we can hear his singing voice as well as is speaking voice in the Introduction. Fr. Abel transcribed the chant texts in Malayalam script. He also wrote a personal letter to me with his comments on the chants. We have posted the manuscript and the letter in the Resources of Researchers section on the web site of See my note on 008-167. This recording and the manuscript are first-class relics from the past. They are unique treasures of the Syro Malabar Church and a great resource for researchers.

Joseph J. Palackal, CMI
New York
11 March 2020
2. 009-12 Fr. Abel Periyapuram, C. M. I. sings Syriac and Malayalam versions of melodies from the liturgy of the Syro-Malabar Church. Introduction by Joseph J. Palackal. Recorded on 22 July 1998 at ASA Music Productions in Mount Vernon, New York.
3. 009-12a

Wita wangunnen. Fr. Abel CMI. funeral for priests "Witawangunnen." Fr. Abel sings his own (free) translation of the Syriac chant, "Etha pus lek" (farewell O church) from the Funeral services for priests in the Syro Malabar Church.

4. 009-13 Fr. Abel Periyapuram, C. M. I. sings Malayalam version of model melodies from the liturgy of the Hours of the Syro-Malabar Church for the doctoral study of Joseph J. Palackal. Recorded at Fr. Abel's office at Kalabhavan, Kochi, Kerala on 23 Aug 2001.
5. 009-14 Fr. Abel Periyapuram, C. M. I. sings chants from the liturgy of the Syro-Malabar Church. Recorded at Joseph J. Palackal's office in Maspeth, New York on 20 Sep 1997 during Fr. Abel's visit to U. S. A. Of special interest is the conversation between Fr. Abel and Joseph J. Palackal on the rhythmic aspects of these melodies.
6. AP 253 Fr. Abel's Voice. A Res Qala (Model Melody). Syriac and Malayalam versions.

Books written by Fr. Abel Periyappuram

# Title and Publisher details Pdf Download link

മരിച്ചവർക്കു വേണ്ടിയുള്ള പാട്ടുകുർബാന

Reliqum Mass
Lyrics By- Fr. ABEL C.M.I.

Printed at - Ernakulam

Year - 11-4-1988

Resource Code : 008-085


MARICHAVARUDE ORMA മരിച്ചവരുടെ ഓർമ്മ
(Remembrance of dead beloveds)

Lyrics By - Fr. ABEL C.M.I.

  • Copyright Reserved to -Fr. Provincial , C.M.I., Kottayam, CMI Provinicial House, Kottayam
  • Distributors-Deepika Book House,Kottayam
  • Printed at -Deepika Offset Printers, Kottayam
  • Copies- 5000
  • Imprimatur- Joseph Cardinal Parecatil, ArchBishop of Ernakulam
Resource Code : 008-086


മാർക്കുവേണ്ടിയുള്ള മൃതസംസ്കാരകർമ്മം

Lyrics By- Fr. ABEL C.M.I.
Printed at - Ernakulam
Year : 1-1-1987

Resource Code : 008-089


തിരുനാൾ പാട്ടുകുർബാന

Solemn Holy Mass of Feasts
Fr. Abel C.M.I.
Published on 15-11-1987 , Ernakulam

Resource Code : 008-090


ഫാദർ ആബേലിന്റെ ഭക്തി ഗാനങ്ങൾ

Rev Fr. Abel C.M.I, Kalabhavan
  • First impression -March, 1997.
  • Printed at - Deepika offset printers, Sastri Road, Kottayam.
  • Type setting at - Darsan Computers, Sastri Road, Kottayam.
  • Publishers - Deepika Book House, Kottayam
  • Total pages- 306
Resource Code : 008-136


മരിച്ചവർക്കുവേണ്ടിയുള്ള തിരുകർമ്മങ്ങൾ

Fr. Abel C.M.I
(All rights reserved to Provincial C.M.I , St Joseph Province Kottayam)
  • Reprint -November, 2013.
  • Printed at - Alois graphics kottayam. tel: 2569847
  • Publishers - Deepika Book House, Kottayam
  • Total pages- 113
Resource Code : 008-137


Aaradhanaganangal by Fr. Abel Periyappuram CMI
ആരാധനാഗാനങ്ങൾ - ഫാദർ ആബേൽ പെരിയപ്പുറം സി. എം. ഐ.

Printed at - Mar Louis Memorial Press, Ernakulam, Cochin - 11
Resource Code : 008-183


Funeral rites for Priests and Bishops by Fr. Abel, C.M.I.
മൃതസംസ്കാര കർമ്മം

ഫാദർ ആബേൽ, സി. എം. ഐ.

© Copyright reserved
Printed on 1-10-1994

Resource Code 008-184

Additional Resources

Kochin Kalabhavan Celebrated 100th Birthday of Abelachan

Cochin Kalabhavan celebrated 100th Birthday of Abelachan and organised the Award night
News Courtesy - Malayala Manorama

Ormakalil Nakshathram
Jayaram speaks about Abelachan

Malayalam superstar Jayaram speaks about his mentor Fr. Abel and Kalabhavan

News Published in - Deepika

Superstar Jayaram speaks about
his Mentor Abelachan

‘You wouldn’t have seen Jayaram if I hadn’t met Abelachan’

News Published in - Catholic Focus

Letter from Fr. Abel CMI

Letter from Fr. Abel to Dr. Joseph J. Palackal

(Pdf Dowload)

Handwritten Chant Text

Handwritten Chant Text By Fr. Abel CMI

(Pdf Dowload)

Creator of a Syriac Music Genre in Malayalam

By - Dr. Joseph J Palackal ,

(Pdf Dowload)

Life of Christ

Christian Devotional Songs (Malayalam)

Category - Malayalam Christian Songs
CMSI Ref. Code - MA-MAL-011
Year - 1980
Original Format - L.P. Record
Music - K.K. Antony
Lyrics - Fr. Abel C. M I. / Samuel John
Singers - S. Janaki, Jolly Abraham, P. Madhuri, Ambili K.P. Brahmanandan, P.K. Manoharan, K.V. Karthikeyan

Christ The Saviour

Christian Devotional Songs (Malayalam)

Category -Malayalam Christian Songs
CMSI Ref. Code - MA-MAL-018
Original Format - L.P. Record
Music - K.K. Antony
Lyrics - Fr. Abel CMI, Ezhumangalam Karunakaran, Karinkunnam Chandran
Singers - Vani Jairam, Jolly Abraham, B.Vasantha, Shirin Peters, P.K.

Christian Devotional Songs

(Children Interest)

Category -Malayalam Christian Songs
(Children Interest)
CMSI Ref. Code - MA-MAL-012
Year - 1972
Original Format - L.P. Record
Music - K.K. Antony
Lyrics - Fr. Abel CMI
Singers -B.Vasantha, Kumari Padmaja, Baby Sujatha, Baby Jency

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