Mariam Vattalil

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Marth Mariam Vattalil
Rani Maria Vattalil.jpg
Mariam Vattalil.
Born (1954-01-29)29 January 1954
Pulluvazhy,Ernakulam district, Kerala India
Died 25 February 1995(1995-02-25) (aged 41)
Nachanbore Hill, Indore, Madhya Pradesh, India
Venerated in
Attributes Religious habit
  • Aid workers
  • Missionaries

Mariam Vattalil (29 January 1954 – 25 February 1995) was a Syro Malabar Church professed religious and social worker in the Franciscan Clarist Congregation who worked among the poor within the Diocese of Indore. She assumed the religious name of "Rani Maria" upon becoming a nun.

Her cause of canonization commenced in 2003 and she was titled as a Servant of God. Her beatification received approval from Pope Francis on 23 March 2017 and she shall be beatified sometime in 2017.


Vattalil was born in Kerala on 29 January 1954 as the second child to Paily and Eliswa Vattalil. Her baptism was celebrated at the Church of Saint Thomas on the following 5 February. She joined the Franciscan Claret Congregation at Kidangoor following the completion of her secondary schooling and assumed the religious name of "Rani Maria" upon joining and entering the novitiate. She made her final vows on 22 May 1980.

Vattalil served in Bijnor in 1975 and remained at Saint Mary's convent until being transferred to Udayanagar in 1992.

Vattalil was murdered in a knife attack due to the hitman Samandar Singh at Nachanbore Hill in Indore on 25 February 1995 while she made her way to Indore in a bus; she had 40 major injuries besides 14 bruises and unto the last breath said: "Jesus!" repeatedly.[1][2][3][4] The murder was arranged because some landlords were offended due to her work among the landless poor.[1][2][4]

Cardinal Oswald Gracias described her work as an "heroic example ... siding with the poor and disadvantaged".[5] A museum in her honour exists in Ernakulam.


The beatification process opened on 26 September 2003 after the title Servant of God was conferred upon her and the Congregation for the Causes of Saints granted the "nihil obstat" ('nothing against') to the cause. The subsequent diocesan process took place in Indore from 29 June 2005 to 28 June 2007 and received C.C.S. validation in Rome on 27 November 2009.[1][6][7]

The C.C.S. received the Positio in 2014 and passed it onto consulting theologians who – on 11 February 2016 – voiced their approval to the cause. The C.C.S. later approved this on 21 March 2017. Pope Francis approved the cause on 23 March 2017 and confirmed that Vattalil would be beatified sometime in 2017.

The postulator assigned to the cause at present is Giovangiuseppe Califano.

In popular culture[edit]

The documentary entitled "The Heart of a Murderer" – depicting the murder and subsequent repentance of Samandar Singh – was the winner at the World Interfaith Harmony Film Festival of 2013.


  1. ^ a b c The Herald of India, February 2010.
  2. ^ a b Vatican Radio, 28 February 2011.
  3. ^ Francis Arackal, Thoughts For The Upper Room, St Pauls BYB, 2005, ISBN 8171097081, p. 200.
  4. ^ a b C. P. Varkey, Healing The Heart Of Emotional Wounds, St Pauls BYB, 2004, ISBN 8171093019, p. 120.
  5. ^ The Vatican Today, 6 February 2012.
  6. ^ UCA News, 28 February 2011.
  7. ^ Indian Express, Oct 2008.

External links[edit]