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Vatican creates new Archdiocese of Chittagong

The new archdiocese is the second in Bangladesh

Published: February 07, 2017 05:15 AM GMT

Updated: February 07, 2017 05:16 AM GMT

Vatican creates new Archdiocese of Chittagong

Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop George Kocherry and Holy Cross Archbishop Moses M. Costa of Chittagong at Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Cathedral on Feb. 2 after the creation of the Archdiocese of Chittagong. (Photo by Chittagong Diocesan News Service)

Pope Francis elevated Bangladesh's Chittagong Diocese to be the country's second archdiocese and appointed Holy Cross Bishop Moses M. Costa as its first archbishop.

Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop George Kocherry read out the papal bull to announce the new ecclesiastical province during Holy Mass at Our Lady of Holy Rosary Cathedral Church in Chittagong on Feb. 2.

There are eight Catholic dioceses in Muslim-majority Bangladesh covering an estimated 350,000 Catholics. Until Feb. 2, Dhaka, the capital city, was the only metropolitan archdiocese in the country.

Chittagong Archdiocese covers eight civil districts in southeastern Bangladesh. It has about 29,270 Catholics (half from indigenous groups) in 11 parishes and five sub-parishes.

Chittagong is Bangladesh's main port city and prime economic hub. It has a rich cultural heritage and played a significant role in the history of Christianity in the country.

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