Dioceses of India
Total: 1

Diocese of Cochin 

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Rite: Latin
Region : Kerala
Patron: Holy Cross
Founded: 4 February 1558
Province: Verapoly
Status: Diocese
Total area: 235.69 sq.km
Total Population : 65,37,598
Catholics Total: 181026
Diocesan Priests: 127
Religious Priests: 52
Religious Sisters: 571
Minor Seminarians: 67
Major Seminarians: 40

Diocese of Cochin  at a Glance

Ecclesiastical Institutions

Parishes & Substations : 74Retreat Centres: 01
Major Seminaries : 0Diocesan Minor Seminaries: 03
Congregation Minor Seminaries: 08Religious Formation Houses : 01
Men Religious Houses: 17Women Religious Houses: 60

Charitable Institutions

Hospitals : 08Dispensaries / Clinics / Health Centres: 10
Orphanages : 11Homes for Aged & Destitute : 11
Schools for Physically Challenged: 01Homes for Physically Challenged : 03
Crèches: 04Boarding Houses : 08
Counselling Centres : 04De-addiction Centre: 0
Social Centres : 04HIV / AIDS Centre: 0

Educational Institutions

Professional Colleges : 05Degree Colleges: 04
Parallel Colleges : 04Vocational / Technical Training Centres : 02
Higher Secondary / Junior Colleges : 08High Schools : 18
Upper Primary Schools: 02Lower Primary Schools:15
Nurseries / Pre-Primary Schools :20Presses & Media Centres : 03


In 1500 the Portuguese Fathers (Franciscan Friars) reached Cochin and established the first Portuguese Mission in Cochin, in India. They were followed by the Jesuits (1542), Dominicans (1553), Augustinians (1579), Carmelites (1778), and from 1886 by non-religious Portuguese Bishops till 1950. At the arrival of the Portuguese, the Christians in Cochin area joined the Roman Latin Rite.

St. Francis Xavier visited Cochin on several occasions and offered Holy Mass in the St. Francis Church where the famous navigator Vasco da Gama was laid to rest on Christmas day of 1524. A monastery of the Franciscans "Santo Antonio" was established in Cochin in 1518 and two others of the Jesuits in 1550 and 1561. In 1553 the Dominicans founded their College and Monastery in Cochin. The "St. Iago Mission" of Palluruthy was started in 1560 and in 1557 the first printing press in India was established in Cochin.

Because of its singular prominence, Pope Leo X made special mention of Cochin in his Decree erecting the Diocese of Funchal in 1514. In 1534, when the Diocese of Goa was established, Cochin became part of the new diocese.

The Diocese of Cochin was erected on February 4, 1557 by Pope Paul IV in his Decree "Pro ExcellentiPraeeminentia". At that time Cochin was the second diocese in India and it exercised jurisdiction over the whole of south, east of India, Burma and Ceylon, The first Bishop of Cochin was a Dominican Friar Dom George Temudo (1557-1567). By the Decree "PastoralisOfficii" of Pope Gregory XIII (13-12-1572) the bishops of Cochin were required to take possession of the Patriarchal See of Goa whenever it became vacant.

In 1663 the Dutch conquered Cochin and destroyed all the Catholic churches and Institutions in Cochin except the Cathedral and the church of St. Francis Assisi. During the British conquest of Cochin, the Cathedral was destroyed. From 1838 until 1886, the Diocese of Cochin was governed by the Vicar Apostolic of Verapoly. After the reorganization in 1886 five Portuguese bishops ruled the diocese.

In 1950 the Portuguese Padroado was suppressed and the diocese was handed over to the native clergy. Dr. Alexander Edezhath (1951- retired in 1975) was the first Indian Bishop. The present Bp John Thattumkal took charge of the diocese on June 25, 2000.

The territory of the Diocese of Cochin is situated between the Arabian Sea in the west, the Archdiocese of Verapoly in the north and in the east, and the Diocese of Alleppey in the south. As per the Executorial Decree issued soon after the Decree of the erection of the dioceses of Cochin and Alleppey, provision is made that the Diocese of Alleppey may have personal jurisdiction of the so called 'Five Hundred Community' who reside within the territory of the Diocese of Cochin and in the same way, the Diocese of Cochin may have jurisdiction over the so called "Seven Hundred Community" in the territory of the Diocese of Alleppey.

Pilgrim Centres

Pilgrim Centres:  

Former Bishops

Most Rev. John ThattumkalBishop2000-2008
Most Rev. Joseph KureetharaBishop1975-1999
Most Rev. Bishop Alexander EdezhathBishop1952-1999
Most Rev. Archbishop Jose Vieira AlvarnezBishop1942-1951
Most Rev. Abilio AgustoVas Das NevesBishop1934-1939
Most Rev. Jose bento Martin RoberoBishop1909-1931
Most Rev. Matheus De Olivera XavierBishop1898-1908
Most Rev. Joao Gomez FerreiroBishop1887-1879
Most Rev. Jakim De Santa Rita BoetheloBishop1832-1832
Most Rev. Thomas De Noronha E Britto op Bishop1819-1819
Most Rev. jose De Soledad ocdBishop1785-1818
Most Rev. Manuel De Santa Cathenna ocdBishop1778-1785
Most Rev. Sebatiao Da CostaBishop1777-1777
Most Rev. Clement Jos Colocao Lelita sjBishop1745-1746
Most Rev. Antonio De ConcesaoBishop1745-1745
Most Rev. Francesco De Casconselo sjBishop1720-1742
Most Rev. Francesco Pedro Dos Martyres Bishop1717-1717
Most Rev. Pedro Pachecco opBishop1694-1713
Most Rev. Antonino Santa TeresaBishop1692-1692
Most Rev. Pedro De Silva osaBishop1688-1691
Most Rev. Antonino De Santa Dionyco osa Bishop1676-1685
Most Rev. Fernando de Santa MariaBishop1672-1672
Most Rev. Fabiao Dos ReisBishop1668-1668
Most Rev. Joao Celo Bishop1650-1650
Most Rev. Antonio Da SerpaBishop1647-1647
Most Rev. Moguel Da Cruz Rangal opBishop1633-1646
Most Rev. Francesco BarettoBishop1630-1633
Most Rev. Luiz De Britto A Menezes osa Bishop1628-1629
Most Rev. Sabastianos A Santa Pedro osaBishop1615-1624
Most Rev. Andrea De Santa Maria ofm Bishop1588-1610
Most Rev. Matheus De Medina osaBishop1579-1588
Most Rev. Antonio De BajaBishop1578-1579
Most Rev. Henrique De Tavora opBishop1567-1578
Most Rev. Giorgio Temudo opBishop1557-1567