Dioceses of India
Total: 1

Diocese of Sambalpur

Quick Links:      History
Rite: Latin
Region : Orissa
Patron: St. Joseph
Founded: 14 June 1951
Province: Cuttack-Bhubaneswar
Status: Diocese
Total area: 37,299 Sq. km
Total Population : 7,139,384
Catholics Total: 42808
Diocesan Priests: 54
Religious Priests: 60
Religious Sisters: 275
Minor Seminarians: 49
Major Seminarians: 28

Diocese of Sambalpur at a Glance

Ecclesiastical Institutions

Parishes & Substations : 237Retreat Centres: 02
Major Seminaries : 0Diocesan Minor Seminaries: 01
Congregation Minor Seminaries: 02Religious Formation Houses : 09
Men Religious Houses: 01Women Religious Houses: 46

Charitable Institutions

Hospitals : 03Dispensaries / Clinics / Health Centres: 18
Orphanages : 02Homes for Aged & Destitute : 01
Schools for Physically Challenged: 02Homes for Physically Challenged : 03
Crèches: 0Boarding Houses : 14
Counselling Centres : 01De-addiction Centre: 01
Social Centres : 02HIV / AIDS Centre: 01

Educational Institutions

Professional Colleges : 0Degree Colleges: 02
Parallel Colleges : 0Vocational / Technical Training Centres : 05
Higher Secondary / Junior Colleges : 02High Schools : 15
Upper Primary Schools: 42Lower Primary Schools:51
Nurseries / Pre-Primary Schools :20Presses & Media Centres : 01


The Diocese of Sambalpur, formerly called "Gangpur Mission" was started by the Jesuit Fathers in 1908. The Divine Word Fathers took it over in 1948. Today it is one of the suffragans of the Archdiocese of Cuttack - Bhubaneshwar.

The diocese was erected by the Apostolic Constitution dated June 14, 1951 by taking over parts of the Archdioceses of Calcutta, Ranchi and Nagpur. Then it consisted of districts of Sundargarh, Bolangir, Sambalpur and Dhenkanal in the State of Orissa. Bp Herman Westermann, svd, was consecrated on July 29, 1951 as its First Bishop who after 23 years of dedicated service, retired on March 16, 1974.

One of the four districts, Sundargarh was separated from the diocese on July 16, 1979 and the Diocese of Rourkela was created. Its First Bishop Bp Aplhonse Bilung, svd, was ordained on November 3, 1979. Abp Raphael Cheenath, svd, who was residing in Rourkela before the division, shifted his residence to Sambalpur on November 18, 1979. Abp Raphael Cheenath, svd, was transferred to the Archdiocese of Cuttack - Bhubaneshwar in 1985. He was succeeded by Bp Lucas Kerketta, svd, in 1987.

After its division the diocese is bounded on the North by the Diocese of Rourkela and on the South by the Archdiocese of Cuttack - Bhubaneshwar. To the West and the North - West lie the Dioceses of Raipur and Raigarh respectively, while the Diocese of Balasore lies to the East and South - East.

Former Bishops

Right Rev. Lucas Kerketta ,SVD
Bishop Emeritus of Sambalpur
Personal Details
Priestly Ordination:25-Oct-1969
Episcopal Ordination:1-Mar-1987

Tel(P): 09437052768,08658174176
Email(P): lucassmb@yahoo.com
Contact Details
Bishop’s House, Ainthapali, P. O. Budharaja, Sambalpur - 768 004 (Odisha)
Tel(O): 0663-25 40 327, 25 41 656,
Fax : 25 41 656
Email : diogese@sancharnet.in
Most Rev. Herman WestermannBishop1951-1974