Rev. Dr Jose Kaimlett, the Founder of Heralds of Good News, Sisters of Good News and Missionaries of Compassion, was born on 5th May 1941, at Palakattumala in the diocese of Palai, Kerala, India. Father Jose had his lower primary schooling at Palakattumala, and high School at St Francis High School Marangattupalli. In June 1955, he completed school, and joined the minor seminary of the diocese of Palai, and after completing the minor seminary studies, he joined the missionary diocese of Vijayawada. Having completed his philosophical and theological studies at Sacred Heart Seminary Poonamallee, a greatly esteemed and flourishing center of learning, where Father Kaimlett proved to be an outstanding student, he was ordained a priest on 18th April 1966.
In 1969 he was appointed as the parish priest of Bhimavaram West. In 1970 he started the mission centre at Akiveedu, a sub-division of Bhimavaram. In the following year, Bishop Joseph Thumma taking charge as the full-fledged Bishop of Vijayawada, sent Father Jose Kaimlett to erect it as a new parish. Akiveedu was made an independent parish bifurcating it from Bhimavaram and Fr. Jose Kaimlett was appointed the first Parish Priest. He started the construction of the presbytery.
In 1971 he was transferred and appointed as the headmaster and correspondent of St. Ambrose High School, Nidadavole. There he started St. Joseph orphanage for the destitute children who would otherwise have no opportunity of any type of schooling. In 1976 when the diocese of Eluru was bifurcated from Vijayawada, Father Jose Kaimlett was appointed administrator of the new diocese till the new bishop took charge of it. After that, he continued helping Bishop John Mulagada for a year as the procurator of the new diocese and as a sort of one-man-curia till the diocese got organized. In 1977 he took a leading role in the relief and rehabilitation work when a killer cyclone hit Vijayawada and the coastal Andhra Pradesh. In 1978 he was sent to Rome for higher studies where he obtained a doctorate in Canon Law in 1981.
On his return from Rome in 1981, Father Jose devoted his time and energy for the development of the diocese and collaborated most faithfully with Bishop John. During the course of time, inspired by the Holy Spirit, Fr. Jose Kaimlett founded Heralds of Good News in 1984, Sisters of Good News in 1992, and Missionaries of Compassion in 2003. Today missionaries from these societies he founded work in all the continents in over 97 dioceses across the globe. Over the years these societies have grown rapidly due to the untiring work and commitment of Fr. Jose Kaimlett.
Father Kaimlett, showed extraordinary interest in giving quality education to the poor and marginalized sections of the society. For this cause he has established over twenty-eight schools in the remotest areas of India and Africa. Along with the schools; he has built also hostels for the accommodation of children from far away villages. Father Jose had always sympathy and concern for the poor and the suffering and as a result he always did what he could to take care of their health. Holy Cross Hospital, Orphanage and Leprosy Rehabilitation Centre at Nidadavole; St. Vincent de Paul Rehabilitation Centre for Physically Challenged at Thangellamudi; Leprosy Rehabilitation Centre at Sagipadu; General Hospital and T.B. Sanatorium at Gowripatnam; Leprosy Rehabilitation Centre at Janampet; St. Joseph Hospital at Vellachintalagudem; and the Good Samaritan Cancer and General Hospital at Vangayagudem, are examples of what he has realized for taking care of the suffering.
Father Jose is an ardent devotee of the Blessed Mother. On his return from Rome in 1981, he built the unique Shrine of the kind in the region, dedicated to the Blessed Mother at the Hill-top, of Gowripatnam, today known as the Nirmalagiri Shrine. At present millions of people from all walks of life flock to this holy place, seeking blessings and favours through the intercession of the Blessed Mother. Father Jose has built several churches, shrines and chapels. Another important landmark is the dedication of Our Lady of Grace Shrine at Aliabad, in the diocese of Hyderabad in 2009 as a thanks-giving for the graces he received through the intercession of the Mother of Grace.
Father Jose is a versatile genius and erudite writer. For the last five years Father Jose sends regularly the ‘thought for the day’ reflections to all the members of the society. Thousands receive these ‘thoughts’ and are happy that Father stimulates their day with such wonderful stories, anecdotes, jokes and life giving examples. Over the years, he has published three invaluable books, first the Wisdom of the Ages in 1995, a collection of rare quotations for successful living from the lives of great men. Then, other collections of short stories named Tonic for the Spirit, Vols,. I & II, in 2009 and 2010 respectively. In spite of all these, Father Jose remains accessible to people with God given humility and hospitality.
His dedicated service to the society continues to be a perennial source of inspiration to a lot of people across the globe. He has made very valuable and significant contributions in the fields of education and healthcare. He has also established three Societies of Apostolic Life promoting thus vocation to priesthood and religious life. He has propagated Marian devotion in different parts of India. His missions outreach the most remote areas through the establishment of old age homes, hostels, retreat centers, soup kitchens etc. All the missionary endeavors begun by Father Jose, to a great extent, are supported and assisted by numerous benefactors and well wishers from all over the world, who put their trust in Father Jose. It is their support and generous contributions that made possible, reachable and attainable many of the otherwise impossible and unreachable goals. Father Jose is always grateful to all the generous donors who have helped him over the years. In fact his daily Holy Mass is offered for all those who have helped him in his mission in various ways. He insists that we should be grateful for their sacrifices to make our lives and mission after the heart of Jesus who sees all the good works and rewards each one according to one’s deeds.
Father Priestly Mathew
Missionaries of Compassion