Fr Martin Xavier Vazhachira RIP

Fr Martin Xavier Vazhachira RIP


The Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh regrets to announce the death of Father Martin Xavier Vazhachira CMI, Administrator of St John’s parish in Corstorphine, Edinburgh. The 33-year old Indian-born priest had been missing since Tuesday. His body was found yesterday evening, Friday 23 June, on a beach at Dunbar, East Lothian. The cause of death is, as yet, unknown.

“The news of Father Martin Xavier’s death comes as a great shock and a great sadness to all those who knew him and loved him,” said Archbishop Leo Cushley of St Andrews & Edinburgh, 24 June.

“Our thoughts and, more importantly, our prayers are with him and with all his loved ones in both Scotland and India. May he rest in peace.”

Father Martin Xavier Vazhachira was a native of Kerela in southern India. He was ordained a priest of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate order in 2013. He arrived in Scotland in July 2016 in order to undertake post-graduate studies at Edinburgh University. He also served in local Catholic parishes, initially in Falkirk before being appointed to Corstorphine in October 2016.

He was last seen on Tuesday afternoon in his parish house.  The alarm was raised by parishioners after he didn’t turn up for Holy Mass on Wednesday morning. A post-mortem will now be carried out to ascertain the cause of death. His family in India have been informed of the tragic news.

Archbishop Leo Cushley is visiting the parish of St John’s in Corstorphine both today and tomorrow, Sunday, in order to offer Holy Mass and to support and comfort parishioners as they attempt to come to terms with the news of Father Martin Xavier’s death.

Father Martin Xavier Vazhachira CMI (1983-2017). Requiescat in pace.  ENDS


Since this young priest had been serving in Scotland at the time of his death, cause not yet known, we launch this thread for the purpose of offering our prayers for the repose of his soul, and for the consolation of his family. Please do not speculate as to the circumstances of his death – we presume he was taken ill when out, perhaps for a walk.  Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him, may he rest in peace. 

Comments (20)

  • editor

    My personal condolences to the family of Father Vazhachira. How very sad for them to lose one of their own at such a young age. May he rest in peace.

    June 24, 2017 at 4:58 pm
    • Margaret USA

      As a flower withers and a shadow passes, so every man will die, but when the trumpet sounds, the dead will arise as in an earthquake to meet You, O Christ our God. Then, O Master, grant rest among the Saints the soul You have taken from us.

      Parastas, Farewell Verses of St. John Damascene, Tone 2

      Vichnaya pamyat! Eternal memory!

      June 24, 2017 at 5:43 pm
  • Lily

    That’s very sad news, indeed. My condolences to the family and prayers for this young priest. May he rest in peace.

    June 24, 2017 at 5:36 pm
  • Nicky

    Condolences and prayers – this is a terrible tragedy for all involved. May Fr Vazhachira rest in peace.

    June 24, 2017 at 5:44 pm
  • Petrus

    Very sad indeed! May the poor priest rest in peace.

    June 24, 2017 at 5:50 pm
  • Theresa Rose

    It is sad news indeed. I offer my condolences to his family and also my prayers.

    June 24, 2017 at 6:43 pm
  • Faith of Our Fathers

    R. I. P. Father .

    June 24, 2017 at 7:49 pm
  • Margaret Mary

    I see that Father was a member of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate – how lovely. I pray Our Lady was with him in his final moments on this earth. May he rest in peace, and may God comfort his family and friends.

    June 24, 2017 at 8:07 pm
  • Michaela

    Poor Father – my prayers for the repose of his soul. Requiescat in pace.

    My sincere sympathy to his family and friends, also the parishioners who will be in shock. God’s comfort to them all.

    June 24, 2017 at 9:24 pm
  • crofterlady

    How awful. May God have mercy on his soul.

    June 24, 2017 at 11:16 pm
  • Athanasius

    This is too tragic for words. My condolences to Father’s family in India. I note from the report that Father was the same age as Our Lord when He died on the Cross. I hope that will bring some comfort to his grieving family. May his soul rest in peace.

    June 24, 2017 at 11:29 pm
  • Josephine

    What a terrible thing to happen to a young priest, and so far away from his homeland, too.

    I am full of sympathy for his family. May Our Lord be their consolation.

    May the soul of the poor Father, rest in peace.

    June 26, 2017 at 8:20 pm
  • gabriel syme

    What a tragedy; may Fr Vazhachura rest in peace.

    And many condolences to both his family in India and his parishioners in Scotland.

    June 26, 2017 at 10:17 pm
  • Punnakottil

    This is a terrible news. Our deep sympathies to the family. May his soul rest in peace. The mystery of his death has to be found out. What was the cause. Was it an accident? Was there any criminals? Hope the Scotland Police solve the mystery.

    June 27, 2017 at 8:31 am
    • editor


      The Indian Government has asked for a thorough investigation, and I have no doubt that will happen and we will learn the cause of Father’s death in due course. For now, we presume an innocent explanation – he was found on a beach so it may be that he was out for a quiet walk and was taken ill. Before closing this thread, we will post any news on the cause of death, be assured.

      June 27, 2017 at 9:20 am
  • Michaela

    It says in this report that the autopsy was due on 29th June although some delay is caused by lack of experts

    Continuing to pray for his soul, RIP, and for his family.

    July 2, 2017 at 6:52 pm
  • Margaret

    RIP Fr. Martin Xavier.

    August 4, 2017 at 10:16 am
  • Lily

    Has there been any news about what happened to Father, how he met his death?

    August 4, 2017 at 11:52 am
  • Nicky

    I haven’t been able to find anything online about what happened to this young priest. Does anyone know?

    September 14, 2017 at 6:30 pm
    • editor


      On 4th August, 2017, I sent the following email to Peter Kearney, Spokesman for the Scottish Bishops’ Conference:

      Dear Peter,

      We have been checking regularly for news of the cause of death of the young Indian priest Martin Xavier Vazhachira who was found dead on June 23 on a beach near Dunbar. We are surprised that, no date, no announcement has been made as to the cause of death.

      I would like to update the news about this tragedy on our blog. Are you able to give us this information?

      Thank you.

      To date, no reply. Zilch. Zero.

      For the sake of this priest’s family, however, I think it is best to leave the matter there, remembering to pray for the soul of the young priest, and for the consolation of his family.

      September 19, 2017 at 9:46 am

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