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 Kannur

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Bishop Alex Joseph Vadakumthala
Bishop Vadakumthala
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Bishop Alex Joseph Vadakumthala
Bishop's House,
Chovva P.O., Kannur-670006,
P.O., Kerala, India

Phone: (0497)272.9977; 272.9988
Fax :272.9955
Email: [email protected], [email protected]

Pope Francis appointed Father Alex Joseph Vadakumthala, vicar general of Verapoly archdiocese, as the new bishop of Kannur diocese in Kerala on Feb. 1, 2014.

Bishop Vadakumthala was born on June 14, 1959, in Maradu in Ernakulam district in the archdiocese of Verapoly.

He joined St. Joseph's Minor Seminary in Ernakulam and completed philosophy and theology at the seminary in Pune to get ordained on Dec. 19, 1984, as priest of archdiocese of Verapoly.

He was first appointed assistant priest in the Cathedral of Verapoly in 1984 and then at St. Philomina’s Church, Koonammavu from 1985 to 1988. He obtained a doctorate in canon law from the Pontifical Urban University in 1992 and was an official of the pontifical council for health from 1993 to 1999 and secretary of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India (CBCI) commission for health from 1999 to 2009.

From 2009-2011, he held the position of assistant to the chancellor of the archdiocese of Verapoly.

He was also the president of the canon law society of India from 2009 till 2013.

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