Fr. X. Savarimuthu, a remarkable priest and spiritual director of Jesuits, other men and women religious and lay people, made a significant impact on the spiritual journey of many in Tamil Nadu Catholic Church in the past 50 years. A liberated Jesuit, he indeed lived his life in constant and profound union with God. Born on 28th May 1937, at Rammathapuram in Tirunelveli District, to Mr. Xavier Madurendiram and Mrs. Annamariyal, he grew up with his siblings–two brothers and two sisters–in a well-to-do and devout Catholic family. On completing his college studies, he sensed a sudden yet intensely-felt desire in the depths of his heart to become a priest. Responding to God’s call promptly, he left home and entered the Novitiate at Beschi, Dindigul, on 14th June 1961, against his father’s wish. After the Novitiate and Juniorate, he did his Philosophy at Sacred Heart College, Shembaganur, and Theology at Jnana Deepa, Pune. He was ordained a Priest in Madurai on 28th March 1971. He served as a Parish Priest in Tiruchi and Thirumanur, and as a much sought-after retreat preacher and spiritual guide at Dhyana Ashram, Chennai, VMI, Vilangudi, Clive House – Tiruchi, and Beschi Illam – Dindigul. He was known as a mobile pastor, charismatic exorcist, spiritual formator, mercy-filled confessor, generous giver, kind father of the poor and composer of devotional hymns.
Unexpectedly, due to intestinal perforation, he had to undergo a surgery at St. Joseph Hospital, Dindigul. Though initially he showed improvement, his health deteriorated and he passed away peacefully on 3rd March 2021. On the following day, the Funeral Mass was celebrated by Fr. Jebamalai Irudayaraj, Provincial (CEN). Fr. Savarimuthu’s mortal remains were laid to rest in the Beschi cemetery. He was the first CEN Jesuit to reach his heavenly abode.
- Michael Panimaya Raj, SJ