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 Kuzhithurai

Bishop Jerome Dhas Varuvel
Bishop Jerome Dhas Varuvel
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Bishop Jerome Dhas Varuvel
Bishop's House, P.O. Box. 1, Unnamalaikadai 629179, Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu, India
04651 272 077
[email protected]; [email protected]

Bishop Jerome Dhas Varuvel was born on 21 October 1951 at Kallutharai, in Kanyakumari district in the diocese of Kottar.

He completed his school studies in Nagercoil in 1965 and did his Pre-University Course at the Scott Christian College in Nagercoil, before joining the St. Aloysius Minor Seminary (1968-1970) at Nagercoil, as a candidate for the diocese of Kottar.

After philosophical studies at the Sacred Heart Seminary, Poonamallee, Chennai (1970-73) he did bachelor’s degree in Economics from Arulanadar College, Karumathur (1973-76) before joining the Salesians in 1977. He made his first profession on 24 May 1978.

His theological studies were done at the Salesian Pontifical University (1981-85). St. John Paul II ordained him a priest on 2 June 1985 at the Vatican.

After his priestly ordination, the bishop elect completed his Masters degree in Pedagogy from the Salesina Pontifical University before returning to India.

In the Chennai Province of Salesians he worked as vice rector and rector at various Salesian seminaries from 1986 to 2001.

He became Provincial Councillor for two years in 2001 and was Director of the Educational Ministry of the Province of Chennai from 2003-2010.

In 2010 he became the director of Don Bosco Mission at Thalavadi (and Master of Novices (2010).

On June 6, 2020 Bishop Jerome Dhas Varuvel resigned.
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