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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Diocese of Tuticorin

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Bishop Stephen Antony Pillai
Bishop  Antony Pillai
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Bishop Stephen Antony Pillai
Bishop's House,
82 G.C. Road, Tuticorin-628001,
Tamil Nadu, India

Phone: (0461)2320.035
Fax :2327.710

Bishop Stephen Antony Pillai was born in Keezha Manakudy, diocese of Kottar, on June 22, 1952, and was ordained priest on May 7, 1979, for the diocese of Vellore. He entered Santhome Minor Seminary, Chennai, in 1969. He did his philosophy at Arul Anandar College, Madurai and theology at St. Paul’s Seminary, Tiruchirapalli. He also studied in St. Peter’s Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore, and later moved to Urbanian University, Rome.

He served the diocese in the following ministries: assistant parish priest in Chetpet (1979-1980); parish priest in Thachanbali (1983-1986).

He was visiting professor at Don Bosco Major Seminary, Chennai, and Pallottine Major Seminary, Mysore (2016-2017). Since 2017, he is the director of the dDiocesan Retreat Centre, and visiting professor at St. Paul’s Seminary, Tiruchirapalli.

Previous Ordinaries:

  • Bishop Yvon Ambroise (1 Apr 2005 Appointed - 17 Jan 2019 Retired)
  • Bishop Peter Fernando (1999-2003)
  • Bishop Teresnathan Amalanathar (1981-1999)
  • Bishop Ambrose Mathalaimuthu (1971-1980)
  • Bishop Thomas Fernando (1953-1971)
  • Bishop Tiburitius Roche (1923-1953)

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