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Explore South Asia's ancient dioceses

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The cathedral of the first diocese in India.

St. Thomas the Apostle, who is believed to have arrived on Kerala’s Malabar Coast in 52 AD, is considered the father of the Catholic faith in India.

Christian communities developed and expanded further when European missionaries arrived in the 13th and 14th centuries.

The history of a few ancient dioceses in Asia can be dated back to 13th century pre-Portuguese mission expeditions.

Find out the oldest diocese in India here.

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Diocese of Chanthaburi

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Diocese of Chanthaburi
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The Diocese of Chanthaburi was created on Dec. 18, 1965. It is located in eastern central Thailand near to the Cambodian border. The diocese is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Bangkok.

The diocese stretches over an area of 34,000 square kilometers, covering the provinces of Chanthaburi, Chonburi, Prachinburi, Rayong, Sa Kaeo and Trat, as well as areas east of the Bang Pa Kong River in Chachoengsao, and Nakhon Nayok except for the district Ban Na.

One of the most interesting buildings in Chanthaburi Diocese is the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. This 280 years old historical church on the left bank of the Chanthaburi River has been reconstructed many times to accommodate more worshippers. The last time was in 1906.

The cathedral was built in Gothic style by migrant Vietnamese Christians in Chanthaburi. Its roof was removed during World War II to prevent the building from being bombed during Allied air raids.

The website of Chanthaburi Diocese is available (only in Thai) at:http://chandiocese.org/

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