The diocese covers a total land area of 10,448 square kilometres and includes district of Tiruchirapalli and parts of Pudukottai and Karur districts. Tiruchirapalli is the largest city in the diocese.
In 2017, the total population in the diocesan territory was 2,296,098. Tamils are the major ethnic group in the diocese.
Tamil, English and Malayalam are the languages used here.
Pope Gregory XIV in 1836 made Madurai an apostolic prefecture. In 1846, it was raised to an apostolic vicariate and entrusted to the Jesuit Fathers. On Sept. 1, 1886, the vicariate became a diocese with the episcopal residence fixed at Tiruchirapalli. Monsignor Alexis Canoz, SJ, (1846-1888) was the first bishop of the diocese of Tiruchirapalli. He was succeeded by Bishop Jean-Marie Barthe, SJ (1890-1913), and later by Bishop Ange-Auguste Faisandier, SJ (1913-1934).
In 1932, Pope Pius XI separated the eastern part of the diocese, known as the Fishery Coast, and created the diocese of Tuticorin. In 1938, another division was made by Pope Pius XII and the diocese of Madurai was formed. Then bishop of Tiruchirapalli, Monsignor J.P. Leonard, SJ (1936-1938) was transferred to the new See and the diocese of Tiruchirapalli was handed over to the diocesan clergy with Monsignor James Mendonca (1938-1970) as its first Indian bishop. When he retired in 1971, Monsignor Thomas Fernando was transferred from Tuticorin to the diocese of Tiruchirapalli and administered it till 1990.
Father Gabriel Lawrence Sengol was consecrated bishop of Tiruchirapalli on Dec. 30, 1990. At his request, Bishop Gabriel was later relieved of his responsibility and Bishop Peter Fernando, coadjutor bishop of Tuticorin, was appointed apostolic administrator. Bishop Antony Devotta was consecrated and took charge of the diocese of Tiruchirapalli on Jan. 2001.
In 2003, the Vicariate of Dindigul was bifurcated and the new diocese of Dindigul was formed on Dec. 28, 2003, with Bishop Antony Pappusamy as its first bishop.
Tiruchirapalli city is governed by an elected mayor and a council of members. 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.
The diocesan area is well connected by roads and railway. Tiruchirapalli has an international airport.
The diocese covers a total land area of 10,448 square kilometers. The diocese covers the district of Tiruchirapalli and parts of Pudukottai and Karur districts. Tiruchirapalli is the largest city in the diocese.
The per capita income is Rs 17,358 ($430). Farming is the major source of income. Heavy industries are also located in the area. The textile industry in Karur district is well-known.
Government and private operators provide extensive telecommunication facilities in the diocesan area. The diocese is well connected by local cable TV networks.
The literacy rate here is 77.9 percent.
Gonsalo's martyrdom at Nagasaki with the other Christian missionaries is regarded as the most tragic and historic event for Catholicism in Japan
Calungsod and his companion Father Vitores baptized infants, children and adults, defying the risk of persecution and murder
Despite being an ordinary layman, Ruiz remained defiant while facing torture by the Japanese and died a brave martyr
He was the first Korean-born Catholic priest and is now the patron saint of Korea
This fabled church is also known by its Syriac name Mar Sleeva (Holy Cross) Church
Asian Catholics who cannot visit famous Our Lady of Lourdes shrine in France can revere miraculous Mother Mary at Velankanni shrine in India. The Basilica of Our Lady of Good Health is popularly known as “the Lourdes of the East” and holds the largest Catholic Church in Asia.
Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica at Fort Kochi is one of the finest churches and a historic but also a landmark in Kerala state of southern India. Santa Cruz Church blends Indo-European and Gothic architectural style that draws tens of thousands of pilgrims and tourists every year. The cathedral is a great place of devotion and historic significance that survived colonial conquests and invasions to the city.
Mokama Marian shrine on the southern bank of Ganges River bears the legacy persecuted Nepali Catholics banished from their homeland to India for refusing to renounce their faith. Our Lady of Divine Grace Church at Mokama stands about 90 kilometers from Patna, the capital of eastern Indian state of Bihar. Mother Mary is popularly known as Mokama Mata (Mother of Mokama). The church was built to honor Mary in 1947.
The shrine holds a three-meter-tall, white-stone carved statue Virgin Mary on the Tao Pao Mountain in the Diocese of Phan Thiet in southern Vietnam, about 1,600 kilometers from the national capital Hanoi.
The Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Urakami of Nagasaki is a witness of persecution of Christians from 17th to 19th centuries and deadly atomic bombing during the Second World War. This European-style, red-brick church continues to preserve some relics that survived the atomic bombing. Urakami cathedral, also known as St. Mary’s Cathedral, was almost destroyed when the atomic bomb was dropped on Aug. 9, 1945. The church stood about 500 meters from the hypocenter of atomic explosion. The devastation shattered and charred stone-made statues of saints, which were later preserved as relics along with the surviving head of Virgin Mary statue and one of the church’s original bells.
Our Lady of Akita Catholic Church is Yuzawadai is among the most famous churches in Japan. The church shot into global fame thanks to a wooden statue of Blessed Virgin Mary that wept 101 times and Marian apparitions to Japanese nun Sister Agnes Katsuko Sasagawa that miraculously healed her hearing impairment. Japanese wooden sculptor Saburo Wakasa from Akita city carved the now-famous miraculous statue of Virgin Mary in 1963.
The Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception in Seria is a small church on the western Belait district of Brunei, but it shot into fame thanks to the nation’s most famous Catholic – late Cardinal Cornelius Sim. It is also the second of three churches in Brunei dedicated to Virgin Mary. In fact, Mary has a prominent place not only in Christianity, but also in Islam, the dominant faith in Brunei. Holy Quran mentions Mary seventy times and reveres her as the greatest woman to have ever lived.