Saint Chavara was a reformer in the Church, especially in the area of liturgy. He was a brilliant writer, excellent preacher and was an inspiring champion of the Church who successfully fought against evil forces within and outside the Catholic Church. His achievements include the Congregation he founded for women, the two seminaries he established, the schools he started and the printing press he designed with his own hands. It was from the printing press he started the first local daily newspaper Deepika came out in 1887. He was the initiator of organized works of charity in Kerala. While he was the Vicar General of the Syro-Malabar Catholics, he took pioneering steps in 1864 in establishing schools with all the Catholic churches in the state. It was a revolutionary step unheard of in the history of the Church in India. If Kerala has achieved 100% literacy in recent years, it is also because of the radical steps he took in bringing primary education to all the children of the state irrespective of caste and creed.

Saint Chavara was also a true apostle of the sanctity of family life. He worked unceasingly for the spiritual renewal of families through parish retreats. He also formulated and published norms and rules for leading an upright Christian life. Some of his published works include guidelines for the ideal Christian family life.

The Congregation he founded – Carmelites of Mary Immaculate – is now the largest indigenous religious congregation in India with more than 3000 professed members including 1800 priests. The members of this community now serve all over the world.

One of the greatest achievements of Saint Chavara is the Congregation he founded for women, known as Congregation of the Mother of Carmel (CMC). This happened at a time when women in Kerala were confined to their kitchens for life. The new Congregation for women gave them great opportunities to involve in the various ministries of the Church including education and social work. Now there are more than 7000 sisters in this Congregation who are serving in different parts of the world.