The congregation of the Sisters of the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament (SABS), has its origin in the personal experience of the Eucharistic presence of the Servant of God, Thomas Kurialacherry(1873-1925), an ardent devotee of the Holy Eucharist. The inner call received by him was that the Lord in The Blessed Sacrament must be known, loved and adored by all, always and everywhere. He pursued this inspiration with courage, stability and absolute trust and founded the Adoration Congregation in 1908, with the co-operation of its first member, Mother Mary Chantal (Philomina Vallayil of Champakulam, 1880-1972).
The congregation had its humble origin in a cowshed on 29th January, 1908 at Edathua. They shifted to a boat house near the Edathua Church after a few days. When one year of probation was over, the founder gave them the veil on Dec. 8, 1908. The first convent was constructed at Champakulam and on Oct. 17, 1910 the aspirants were shifted to the building which eventually became the motherhouse of the congregation (SABS).
In 1911 by God’s providence, Fr. Thomas Kurialacherry became the Vicar Apostolic of Changanacherry. After his consecration as bishop on Dec.10, 1911 the first five aspirants were vested with the religious habit. On Mar. 18, 1916 the members made religious profession at St. Mary’s Church Parel, Changanacherry.
Charism and Apostolate
The charism of SABS is Eucharistic devotion (Divyakarunya Bhakthi) sprung from the Eucharistic Love. It was the desire of the founder to have this Eucharistic devotion in every SABS and in others so that all people would become adorers of God in spirit and truth and pour out His divine mercy to all whom they meet in their apostolate.
Prime importance is given to Eucharistic Apostolate. Each day every SABS should have a holy hour before the Blessed Sacrament praying for the salvation of all and in reparation for the sins of the whole world. Perpetual adoration is conducted for the whole year covering day and night by taking the congregation as a single unit. Perpetual adoration is being conducted in various centers in Kerala and in other places like Vijayawada, Delhi, Warangal, Ootty, Ujjain, Imphal, Gwalior and Cicily.
To share the Eucharistic love with our brethren and thus to draw all to the table of the Eucharistic Lord, besides the Eucharistic apostolate SABS extends their services in the fields of education, healing, social welfare and missionary activities as and when appropriate. About 40% of our sisters are serving in the educational field, 18% in the healing ministry and over 6% in social ministries.
To be true to the special charism of its founder the congregation extended its fields of apostolate to all the Syro-Malabar dioceses of Kerala. Independent units of the congregation under the bishops concerned were unified under one Superior General on Sep.15, 1963. It was raised to Pontifical status by His Holiness Pope Paul VI on Feb.11, 1968.
Enthused by the spirit of the congregation to make the Eucharistic Lord known, loved and adored by the whole world, the sisters extended their services to the states outside Kerala. It was in 1965 that they took up this challenge. The steady growth of the congregation made it possible to establish 4 regions in1986, in various parts of the country under the provinces of the south. In 1998, 5 mission vice-provinces were inaugurated in different parts of India. Now the services of SABS are available in almost all the states in India. At present the congregation has nearly 4000 sisters in 17 provinces. Sisters from states other than Kerala have professed in the congregation, which is a clear sign of growth and development.
Led by zeal and enthusiasm, the sisters have taken up the challenge to spread Eucharistic devotion in countries abroad like Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Kenya, Tanzania, Nepal, South Africa, United States and Russia.
The general curia of the congregation operates from Cenacle, Aluva. A cloister is attached to this house, providing ample facilities for those who wish to lead a life of prayer in seclusion for a limited period. The scholastics from all provinces gather here for a period of 1 year for Common Juniorate, before their final profession.
The Adoration Congregation is striving forward with its vision and dreams to meet the challenges of the new century. We hope that our sisters with renewed commitment and enthusiasm search for new pastures to extend our services where we have not yet reached and thus fulfill the missionary mandate of the congregation that “the Eucharistic Lord be known, loved and adored by all, always and everywhere”.