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Diocese of Nongstoin

Diocese of Nongstoin
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In a land area of 5, 247 square kilometers, the diocesan territory covers entire West Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya state. Nongstoin is the biggest town in the diocese.

Population

The total population in the diocesan territory is 456,540 at end of 2016. Khasi, Garo, Lyngngam and Atong are the major ethnic groups.

Language

Khas and Garo are the languages used in the area.

History

The growth of the Church in West Khasi Hills is attributed solely to the zealous missionaries who dedicated and sacrificed their lives for the Gospel. Christianity reached here in 1907 under the supervision of the saintly Father Otto Hopfenmuller.

With arrival of Father Constantine Vendrame, SDB, in 1922, the Church activities flourished in the area.

The nearest Mission station was Marbisu Parish, 76 kilometers away from Nongstoin, under the care of Father Carmel Attard, SDB, a Maltese missionary.

From 1970 onwards, the sacrifice and untiring endeavour of the missionaries boosted the mission in West Khasi Hills (at that time under Assam state). The Shillong diocese felt it necessary to extend the pastoral institutions to the western zone of the diocese. Thus, the parish of St. Peter the Apostle was established on May 12, 1966, at Pyndengrei, Nongstoiñ, with Father Emmanuel Albizuri, SDB, as the parish priest and Father John Mary Premoli, SDB, (an Italian) as assistant parish priest. These two "bulldozer missionaries" travelled far and made it possible for the present diocese to come into existence.

The diocese of Nongstoin was created by Pope Benedict XVI on Jan. 28, 2006. The Apostolic Nuncio to India, Archbishop Pedro Lopez Quintana, ordained Bishop Victor Lyngdoh on April 2, 2006, and installed him as the first bishop of Nongstoiñ diocese on April 4, 2006, amidst a turbulent torrential cyclonic rain.

Political

Nongtstoin is managed by the municipality. Villages and small towns are administered by elected local bodies called panchayats and municipalities respectively.

Transportation

The diocesan area is well-connected in terms of transport infrastructure by roads. The nearest airport is in Guwahati city, which is 135 kilometers from Nongstoin.

Economy

The per capita income in the territory is Rs 18, 274 ($392.50) as of December 2009. Farming especially paddy cultivation is the biggest occupation. Maize and millet are also grown. The main commercial crops are potato, ginger, turmeric, oilseed, black pepper, arecanut and betel leaves.

Telecommunication

Government and private operators provide extensive telecommunication facilities in the diocesan area. The diocese is well-connected by local cable TV networks.

Education

Nearly 65.10 percent is the literacy rate in the diocesan territory.

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