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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 Madurai

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Archdiocese of Madurai
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The archdiocesan territory covers a land area of 8,910 square kilometers, and includes the civil districts of Madurai, Theni and Virudhanagar. Madurai, the second largest city in the state of Tamil Nadu, is the most important city in the archdiocese.

Population

The population in the archdiocesan territory was 6,413,000 as of 2016-end. Tamils form the main ethnic group.

Political

Madurai city is governed by a corporation. Towns are governed by municipalities, whereas villages and small towns are administered by local bodies called panchayats. The members of the local bodies are elected by adult suffrage.

Transportation

The archdiocesan area is well-connected in terms of transport infrastructure by roads and railway. The Madurai airport is an important gateway to the south of Tamil Nadu.

Geography

The archdiocesan territory covers a land area of 8,910 square kilometers, and includes the civil districts of Madurai, Theni and Virudhanagar. Madurai, the second largest city in the state of Tamil Nadu, is the most important city in the archdiocese.

Economy

The per capita income in the archdiocesan territory as of September 2006 was Rs 22,623 rupees ($492). Agriculture is the major occupation in the area.

Telecommunication

Government and private operators provide extensive telecommunication facilities in the territory. The archdiocese is well connected by local cable TV networks.

Education

The literacy rate here is 74.86 percent.

Culture

Madurai is a well-known centre for Tamil studies. It is called the Athens of the East. Its magnificent temples and palaces are important cultural and tourist centres.

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