The name of Mar Julius I often crops up in relation to the infamous Rene Villatte and often Mar Julius is tarnished with the same brush.
Apart from that very little is known to the outside world about him.
Fr Alvarez was a ex Roman Catholic priest from Goa who converted to the Syrian Orthodox Church of Malankara in the 1880's after being put under censure by the Latin Archbishop of Goa. The censure had to do with the fearless writing and speaking of Fr Alvarez at a time when Portuguese rule in Goa was being torn apart by civil and ecclesiastical disputes. It was also the time when the so called Goan schism had broken out when the Padraodo clergy rebelled against Rome when it ended Portuguese crown patronage and instituted the jurisdiction of the Congregation of the Propagation of the Faith in British India.
Fr Alvarez and another ex RC priest Fr Salvador Narohna converted to Orthodoxy and led a community of over 2000 families into Orthodoxy and also established missions in other parts of India and Sri Lanka. Sadly many of the missions have withered away, but a flourishing community does exist today on the West Coast of India. Interestingly till the late 1980's this community continued basically as Western Rite in the Orthodox Church using the Tridentine Latin rite with a few basic corrections. Today however the liturgical practice is entirely Eastern.
For the first time a rare autobiography of Mar Julius has been put into the public domain . It is not exhaustive but makes for a very interesting read and gives a rare insight into who Mar Julius really was.
My parish is blessed with the relics of Mar Julius and in my heart I hold him to be confessor and saint.
Scans of the book can be found here http://www.malankaraorthodox.tv/alvaresmarjulius/bio1.pdfhttp://www.malankaraorthodox.tv/alvaresmarjulius/bio2.pdfhttp://www.malankaraorthodox.tv/alvaresmarjulius/bio3.pdf