88-year-old still in love with words - The New Indian Express

88-year-old still in love with words

Published: 01st October 2013 01:04 PM

Last Updated: 01st October 2013 01:05 PM

His 88-year-old hands and mind are firm and sharp when he is indulging in his passion. For Antony Elevumkudy, the vicar of St Mary’s Forane Church, Tripunithura, writing  rejuvenates him. Taking inspiration from his eventful career as a priest and knowledge acquired through wide reading, he has so far written 72 books. The senior most priest in Ernakulam archdiocese is now working on his next book. Though he does not want to reveal the suspense in it, he says the book would give an insight into the values of life.

Born in a village in Perumbavoor to Devassy Elevumkudy and Mariam Sankoorickal, he was ordained priest in 1955. That was the time when he took his pen more seriously. His first book, Kannukal Thurakkuvin, a Malayalam translation of Light Your Lamps by Fulton J Sheen, the American archbishop of the Roman Catholic Church, was well received.

“The thoughts of the famous writer inspired me and I decided to pass on his ideals to all. So I translated the book into Malayalam,” he said.

“I took the advice of John Kunnapilli, my professor at St Joseph Seminary, Aluva, which helped me in a great way to hone my skills. He extended his support for my first venture. He taught me to keep the language simple and reminded me that the success of a writer depends on how fast a reader can grasp the idea from the writer’s diction. I have always taken note of all the invaluable tips and believe that they are reflected in my works.” he elaborates.

He adds that the translation gave him command over the language. “Though my first copy had to be edited by my professor, the rest were fully done by me,” he said.

He had written several books in both Malayalam and English. But readers picked up Sanmargasastram Prasangavedhiyil as their favourite which is about his thoughts and knowledge gained from experiences in life.

“I had to deliver speeches on various subjects both inside and outside the churches. To make the speeches perfect, I had also gone through a lot of books. After I presented each speech at various ceremonies, I obtained mastery in the particular subject. This knowledge inspired me to write the book which my readers term as my masterpiece.”

He also suggests that the youngsters have to read a lot to be inspired to write books. “People of my generation used to read and reread the same books, but the younger generation hardly bothers to leaf through the old books after they pass out from school or college. This attitude should change. Whatever one studies should be revised periodically to achieve mastery on the subject so as to be inspired to write,” he said.

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