A great grandfather named Idichandy, who lived about ten generations(Nearly five hundred years) ago is our known Forefather and Founder of Vadakethalackal Family. Idichandy lived in a house called pazhayapura on the east side of the road which was just on the south of the present Vadakethalackal "kudumbam"(Theruvile Veedu) at Mavelikara. But we will come back to Mr.Idichandy after a journey in search of our history in the greater past.
AN AUDIO VISUAL PRESENTATION
The Kodumgallore Link...
The history starts from Kodumgallore and dates back to the times of St.Thomas, one of the disciples of Jesus Christ, who also started his holly tour of Kerala from Kodumgallore (Mahodayapuram), believed to be in the year AD 52. The day when St. Thomas arrived Kodumgallore, the King of Kodumgallore was conducting the marriage of his daughter. As a foreign tourist and traveller St. Thomas was also invited to the palace to attend the marriage. St. Thomas was one among the many religious and Royal dignitaries present there. St.Thomas, for some reason, ignored the reception and was immersed in a sort of deep thoughts. A royal servant noticed this and he considered this an act of dis-respect to the Royal feast. He then slapped St.Thomas on his face. St.Thomas is quoted to have said "the hand that did beat me will be bitten off by dog". After a while when that servant went out to bring water, a tiger did bite him and he lost that hand. Everybody gathered there was convinced that St.Thoams was having some supernatural powers. The King heard about this , requested St.Thomas to bless his daughter and son-in-law and St.Thoams obliged. This is only one of the many prevailing narrations about St.Thomas.
In Kodumgallore St.Thomas is said to have met some five prominent brahmin personalities with religious rights ("Bhattathiri"), during the course of his preaching of Gospel in different places, who were very rigid in their beliefs. These men and St.Thomas were engaged in a sort of debate and display of their beliefs & powers and finally St.Thomas won over the challenges by his devine powers. Four of the "Bhattathiries" straight away embraced christianity, but the fifth one, Sankaranarayana Bhattathiri from "Karamana illam" refused to believe and follow St.Thomas. He was very much proud of his position, powers and rights he inherited by tradition.
But Sankaranarayana Bhattathiri gradually felt lonely and disturbed and after a while came back to St.Thomas and accepted christianity. After this he is believed to have stayed as a guest to the King of Poonjar for some time.
The Thazhamon Connection...
Sankaranarayana Bhattathiri then started travelling to the south, reached Thazhamon Mutt, Chengannur, and stayed there as their guest. First it was not known to the Thazhamon mutt inmates that they are hosting a Bhattathiri who is performing the religious rights ("Poojas"), in the name of christ and with reverence to St.Thoams. But this was discovered when Sankaranarayana Bhattathiri married Devaki "Antharjanam",a member of the Thazhamon mutt. Other mutt members were in dyllema. Contrary to the normal practice of declaring them out-cast and sending them out of the family, they decided to move them to another safe and convenient house.
The Mavelikara Link...
The place they chosen was in Mavelikara, the north end of Mavelikara market, a site not much exposed but with a pond and other facilities for performing "poojas" and also convenient for living. Sankaranarayana Bhattathiri and Devaki Antharjanam were brought here on an elephant escorted by body guards and servants. They also brought domestic animals like cows etc. By the time things became clear to the public they were already known by their new names: "Thomas" and "Mariya". By now some of the body guards and servants turned against "Thomas", but everything was controlled by the inherant powers of Thomas.
It is said that the religious hindu dieties of Sankaranarayana Bhattathiri were resited to a temple and some other people were appointed by him to perform "Poojas" in this temple. The present temple site we see at Vadakethalackal, Mavelikara, is believed to be the same.
"Thomas", a high ranking Brahmin Bhattathiri by birth, eventualy became a very successful and influential person in the society and this created some enmity on the part of the then Mavelikara Royals. But everything was overcome by the brilliant performance of Thomas who remained a legend to the people of Mavelikara.
Thomas had only one son who was popularly known as Varkey. On the northern side of the road there was an "illam" called Cheriyamadam and Parvathy Antharjanam was the only inheritant. This brahmin family also accepted Christianity and Parvathy changed her name and became "Sosamma". Varkey married Sosamma. This couple had four children: Itty Avira was the eldest son and was the first christian priest in the Vadakethalackal family.
Fr.Itty Avira married Kocheliyamma of Palakkunnathu Ambattu family, Maramon. By and during the times of Fr.Itty Avira Vadakethalackal family attained great heights in wealth and influence like some other contemporary families in Mavelikara.
Now we have come to a halt !, We have some missing links !!, the links between Fr.Itty Avira and Mr. Idichandy whom we met in Pazhayapura at the begining of our journey !!! Ok the jouney will continue after some time.....
In the meantime let us go back to Mr.Idichandy....
Idichandy who lived in Pazhayapura, had three sons: Cheriyan, Ninan and Kiriyachan.
Cheriyan had two sons: Oommumman* and Ninan**
Oommumman had three sons:Cheriya,Geevarghese and Idichandy***
Cheriya and Geevarghese established Adoor Shakhas.
Idichandy***who was a priest established Puthenpura branch of Vadakethalackal family.