At the General Chapter (held every six years) four friars are elected to be the General Councillors representing the four geographical areas of the Order: (1) Africa, (2) the Americas, (3) Asia-Australia-Oceania and (4) Europe. The General Councillors are a link between their respective geographic areas and the General Council. Together with the other members of the General Council they also share in the responsibility of promoting the common good of the entire Order.
At the General Chapter in September 2019, Fathers Conrad Mutizamhepo (Africa), Luis Maza Subero (the Americas), Robert Thomas Puthussery (Asia-Australia-Oceania) and Richard Byrne (Europe) were elected as the General Councillors for the Order.
Fr. Robert Thomas Puthussery, O.Carm. is the General Councillor of Asia, Oceania and Australia
Father Robert Thomas Puthussery was born in 1967 as the youngest child of 9 children in Kerala, India. He had his schooling in his home town Mookkannoor in Kerala. At the age of 15 he joined the Carmelites and made his simple profession in 1987 and his solemn profession in 1990. After his philosophy and theology studies he was ordained a priest in 1994.
He did a Bachelor’s degree (B.A. 1990-93) and a Master of Arts (M.A. 1994-96) in English Literature and taught as an Assistant professor (1996-97) at Christ College Bangalore, India. From 1997-2000 he served as Prior and Rector for the Carmelite minor seminarians at Carmel Nivas, Kothamangalam. From 2000-2002 he did a Masters Degree in Applied Theology at the University of Middlesex, London. Thereafter he served as Chaplain to the immigrant Syro-Malabar Catholic communities in London, Liverpool and Manchester, United Kingdom. From 2006-2007 he served as the Student Director of the British Province of the Carmelites. While serving as the Sub-Prior of the international Carmelite community at East Finchley, London he completed his doctorate (PhD 2006-2010) at the University of Liverpool in pastoral psychology.
After his return from the United Kingdom in 2011, he served as Prior and Spiritual Director of the Carmelite Major seminarians at Carmeljyoti Study house while lecturing at Christ University (2011-14) Bangalore, as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Language and Media Studies and the School of Law.
In 2014 he was elected Prior Provincial of the Order of Carmelites of St. Thomas Province of India. From 2017 he was appointed the Academic Chair and Manager of Mount Carmel College of Arts and Science in Kothamangalam, Kerala. He has given orientation programs and motivational talks to students, teachers, clergy and medical professionals.
In September 2019 he was elected the General Councillor of Asia, Australia Oceania for a period of six years from 2019-2025. His area of responsibility is the General Carmelite Youth Commission.