Explore the Oldest Dioceses in South Asia

Cardinal Cheong

The cathedral of the first diocese in India.

It is believed that Christianity was introduced to India by Thomas the Apostle,
who is said to have reached the Malabar Coast of Kerala in 52 AD.

Christian communities developed and expanded further when
Portuguese missionaries arrived in the 13th and 14th centuries.

History of a few oldest dioceses in India as the cradle of Indian Christianity
can be dated back to the 15th century.

Find out which is the first diocese in India here.

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Archdiocese of Tiruvalla

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Archbishop Thomas Koorilos
Archbishop Koorilos
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Archbishop Thomas Koorilos
Archbishop's House,
Marygiri, P.B. No -4,
Tiruvalla 689 101, India

Phone: +91 469 2701319, 2730620
Fax :+91 469 260822
Email: [email protected], [email protected]

Archbishop Thomas Mar Koorilos was born on Oct. 19, 1958, in Kadapra in Pathnamthitta district of Kerala. He joined the Minor Seminary of the eparchy of Tiruvalla in 1974 and completed his higher secondary education in St. Berchman's College, Chenganacherry. He was sent to Papal Seminary, Pune, for his philosophical and theological studies. He was ordained priest on Dec. 30, 1985. Later, he served as the vicar of parishes at Kumali, Vandanmedu, Chettukuzhy, Mulakkaramedu, Kattapana, Pazhayarikandom, Niranam East (Alamthuruthy). In 1988, he was appointed secretary to Bishop Geevarghese Mar Timotheos. He also served as the co-ordinator of the Malankara Catholic Community in Delhi and took a doctorate in canon law from Pontifical Oriental Institute, Rome. He holds the position of chancellor and judicial vicar of Eparchy.

Pope John Paul II appointed him auxiliary bishop of the eparchy of Tiruvalla on July 5, 1997. He was ordained bishop on July 17, 1997. On Jan. 15, 2003, he was appointed first metropolitan of the eparchy of Muvattupuzha and was enthroned on Feb. 6, 2003. Mar Koorilos was appointed as the second metropolitan archbishop of the Tiruvalla on March 26, 2007, and was installed on May 2, 2007. He is serving as the secretary of the Holy Episcopal Synod of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church.

Previous Ordinaries:

  • Archbishop Baselios Mar Cleemis (2003 -2006)
  • Bishop Geevarghese Mar Timotheos (1988-2003)
  • Bishop Philipose Mar Stephanos (Priest: 27 Apr 1979; Auxiliary Bishop: 25 Jan 2010 to 5 Aug 2017)
  • Bishop Isaac Mar Youhanon (1978- 1987)
  • Bishop Athansios (1955-1977)
  • Bishop Joseph Mar Severios (1950 - 1955)
  • Bishop Jacob Mar Theophilos (1933 -1950)

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Union des Nouvelles Catholiques Asiatiques (UCA News, UCAN)
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