Archdiocese of Dhaka
The archdiocesan area of 26,788 sq. kilometres includes one of the country's eight divisions. It comprises the civil districts of Brahmanbaria, Chandpur, Comilla, Dhaka, Gazipur, Manikganj, Munshiganj, Narsingdi and Narayanganj. Dhaka is the national capital of Bangladesh.
By the second half of the 16th century, Catholics lived in various parts of present day Bangladesh. These areas included Hoshenpur of Mymensingh district and Sripur near Sonargaon, the old capital of eastern Bengal. When Mylapore (Chennai, India) was made a diocese in 1606, the mission stations of Bengal were placed under its jurisdiction. Among the churches erected by the Augustinians at that time were those at Nagori in 1695, and Tejgaon in 1677.
In 1834, the Vicariate Apostolic of Bengal was created under the jurisdiction of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. In 1850, this Vicariate was divided into two, the Apostolic Vicariates of Eastern and Western Bengal. In 1852, the Vicariate of Eastern Bengal, with its headquarters in Dhaka, was entrusted to the newly-founded Congregation of the Holy Cross, whose first missioners arrived in 1853. The congregation still serves in Bangladesh.
The first Vicar Apostolic of Eastern Bengal, Monsignor Thomas Oliffe, served during 1852-53. From 1855 to 1859, Father Louis Verite CSC served as Pro Vicar Apostolic. His successor Father Pierre Dufal CSC was named Vicar Apostolic in 1860 and was ordained a bishop in France. He returned to Dhaka in 1861 and served there until 1876.
From 1876 to 1889, when the Holy Cross missionaries were recalled by their superior to France, the vicariate was administered by Benedictine monks of the Anglo-Belgian province. Dom Cuthbert Downey served as Pro Vicar Apostolic and Dom Gregory de Groote as administrator.
In 1889, the Holy Cross missionaries returned, led by Father Michael Fallize. The Diocese of Dhaka had been canonically erected on September 1, 1886, its territory including that of the present day dioceses of Chittagong (Bangladesh), Silchar (Assam, India), and Prome (Myanmar). Chittagong was removed from the jurisdiction of Dhaka in 1927.
When it gained independence in 1947, Dhaka was still a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Calcutta in India. In July 1950, Dhaka was raised to an archdiocese, heading a new ecclesiastical province with Chittagong , Dinajpur and Jessore (present-day Khulna) dioceses as suffragans. Holy Cross Father Lawrence Leo Graner was appointed the first Archbishop of Dhaka.
In September 1960, Pope John XXlll gave Dhaka (and Bangladesh as a whole) its first Bengali bishop in the person of Auxiliary Bishop Theotonius A. Ganguly, CSC. In November 1967, Bishop Ganguly became the first Bengali Archbishop of Dhaka. Following his death in September 1977, Bishop Michael Rozario of Dinajpur was appointed the third Archbishop of Dhaka on December 17, 1977. He was installed on April 9, 1978.
In the meantime, Bangladesh had won its independence from Pakistan in December 1971, and the archdiocese, as the only metropolitan see for all of Bangladesh, grew in importance and received greater responsibility.
Archdiocese of Chittagong
The Chittagong Archdiocese comprises 17 civil districts -- Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar, Bandarban, Rangamati, Khagrachhari, Noakhali, Feni, Laxmipur, Bhola, Patuakhali, Pirojpur, Barisal, Jhalokati, Barguna, Gopalganj, Madaripur and Shariatpur.
Diocese of Khulna
The Diocese of Khulna was canonically erected on January 3, 1952, as the Diocese of Jessore, with parts taken from the Archdiocese of Calcutta (presently Kolkata) and the Diocese of Krishnagar in India.
Diocese of Mymensingh
Created in 1987, the Mymensingh Diocese is located within the ecclesiastical territory of Dhaka in Bangladesh.
Diocese of Rajshahi
On May 21, 1990, the Diocese of Rajshahi was canonically erected, incorporating the southern portion of the greater Diocese of Dinajpur.
The total population was 19,072,080 in 2017. In addition to Bangla, different tribal languages such as Santali, Oraon (Kuruk and Sadri), Mahali and Paharia are also spoken by indigenous people in the diocesan territory.
Archdiocese of Agra
Archdiocese of Agra covers 14 civil districts of northern India's Uttar Pradesh state and two districts of neighboring Rajasthan. It is spread over an area of 49,162 square kilometers. Agra city is just 200 kilometers south of New Delhi. The region plays an important role in tourism, culture, agriculture, politics, industry and education.
One of the seven wonders of the world, the Taj Mahal, is situated in Agra.