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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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Diocese of Jaffna

Bishop Emmanuel Thomas Savundranayagam
Bishop Emmanuel Thomas Savundranayagam
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Bishop Emmanuel Thomas Savundranayagam
Bishop's House, Jaffna, Sri Lanka Mailing Address : Bishop’s House Post box 2, Jaffna
+94 21-2222161
Fax :+94 21-222 9953
[email protected] [email protected]

Bishop Emmanuel Thomas Savundranayagam was born on July 13, 1938, in Kayts. He studied at St. Martin's Seminary Jaffna and the National Seminary at Ampitiya, Kandy, from 1957-1964. He was ordained a priest on Dec. 21 1963. His episcopal ordination was on July 31, 1981, at Madhu church at Mannar. Bishop Savundranayagam completed his Doctorate in Sacred Theology at the Pontifical Urban University in Rome, and his Diploma in Catechetics at Bangolore in India. He took charge of the Diocese of Mannar on Aug. 2, 1981, and became Bishop of Jaffna in 1992. He celebrated his episcopal silver jubilee on July 30, 2006. Bishop Savundaranayagam is the vice chairman of Catholic National Commission for Justice, Peace and Human Development, as well as vice chairman of the Catholic National Commission for Missionary Activity of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Sri Lanka.
Address: Bishop's House, Jaffna, Sri Lanka.
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