Fr. Joy Karayampuram, SJ was an affectionate, dedicated, trustworthy and unassuming person. He had a special love and commitment to the poor and deprived sections of people. His first assignment as a young priest was to Ratanpurwa in West Champaran District, where he inherited and carried forward the work of a veteran social activist of the Province, Fr. Thomas Chakkalackal, SJ. This apostolate for four years among the bonded labourers and oppressed, illiterate and landless people – Dalits, Oraons and Tharus – at the border of India with Nepal, shaped the person of Joy: his life-style, intellect, relationships and spirituality. He studied and practiced law to serve the voiceless.
He brought this passion for mission and love for the poor into his administrative roles as Rector of KR High School, Bettiah, as Provincial of the Province, and as Superior of the Jesuit community at the Indian Social Institute, Delhi, and to his last appointment as Rector of XTTI, only six months before his untimely and unexpected death due to the second wave of the Corona pandemic.
At his burial service, Most Rev. Sebastian Kallupura, Archbishop of Patna, narrated an example of the quiet
and unassuming way in which Fr. Joy helped many people: Fr. Joy had sorted out the legal complications
regarding the landholdings of one of the parishes of the Archdiocese, which involved much hard work and
deft handling; it seems no one knew of this work of Fr. Joy, except the Archbishop and the Parish Priest.
Fr. Joy never looked for recognition or appreciation for his work. He was rooted in the person of Jesus,
from whom he received his ‘reward’ in the innermost recesses of his being. Fr. Joy, you left us so suddenly.
Be our advocate in heaven.
Susai Raj, SJ