According to eminent historians in Kerala, Njavallil family was descended from Parackal Manayil Parameswarn Namboodiripad who lived at North Parur. He embraced Catholicism as far back as in the 1st Century A.D. straight from the apostle St.Thomas who landed in Kerala in 52 A.D. and received the name Yohannan when baptized. From North Parur Yohannan’s two sons moved to Pallippuram, on the western bank of the Vaikom backwaters. Their house name there was Palackal.
The Puliyannoor connection
From the Palackal family at Pallipuram one of the sons of the succeeding generations moved to the east in search of fertile land and better prospects and reached Pulliyannoor, the western part of Pala, and settled down there. The land he purchased for his dwelling was called “Tharayil” and he was popularly known as Tharayil Thomman Mappila. He had brought with him a huge quantity of gold and silver which he used to purchase vast stretches of land. He invested a good amount in business too. As a matter of fact, within a short period, he amassed a lot of wealth, both movable and immovable. Being quite generous, he helped the poor and the downtrodden people all around.
Pala gets a Cathedral
Tharayil Thomman Mappila was very popular among the public and he enjoyed close proximity with the ruler of the land as well. It is also said that he had been the adviser of the ruler on economic matters. As there were no churches at Pala or nearby in those days, he had to go to Aruvithura for all his spiritual purposes. Availing of his influence over the ruler, he managed to get permission to construct a church at Pala for which he got free land from the ruler.
Established in July, 1002 with the co-operation of three other good Catholic families, viz, Koottumkal, Vayalakombil and Erakonni, this St. Thomas Church later became St. Thomas Cathedral when late H.E., the Bishop Sebastian Vayalil became the first Bishop of Pala diocese. With justifiable pride we can say it was Tharayil Thomman Mappila, our first father at Pala, who gave an effective leadership to construct St.Thomas Church at Pala, the Capital town of Meenachil Taluk.
Birth of Njavallil family
Tharayil Mahakudumbam, founded by Thomman Mappila, has now branched out into nearly forty prominent families and our Njavallil family is one among them. Our first father Cherian Kurian founded Njavallil family at Lalam Kara, lalam Village, on the northern side of Pala, about 250 years back. Our first mother Mariam (the better half of Cherian Kurian) belonged to the Kattakayam family, she being the daughter of Chandy Mappila, Kattakayam.
The Njavallil family mainly consists of nine branches