The Congregation of Carmelities of Mary Immaculate (CMI), the first indigenous religious congregation of India, had its beginning in the first half of the 19th century. On December 8, 1855, on the day of the feast of Immaculate Conception, the first eleven Fathers made their profession of religious vows. Thus the Congregation was canonically erected, and St. Kuriakose Elias Chavara was appointed the first Prior.
The Congregation from its beginning undertook works of mercy and started charitable institutions. At present the Congregation has more than 2000 members spread all over India, Europe, USA, Latin America, Africa, Australia and Philippines. The Congregation has thirteen Provinces, one vice province, one region and two sub-regions in India and two sub-regions, one each in Kenya and in Peru. The CMI are actively involved in pastoral, education and social apostolates in 23 countries around the world.