Dioceses of India
Total: 1

Diocese of Adilabad

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Rite: Syro-Malabar
Region : Andhra Pradesh
Province: Hyderabad
Status: Diocese
Total area: 16,210
Total Population : 18,640
Catholics Total: 12,800
Diocesan Priests: 46
Religious Priests: 70
Religious Sisters: 248

Diocese of Adilabad at a Glance

Ecclesiastical Institutions

Parishes & Substations : Retreat Centres:
Major Seminaries : Diocesan Minor Seminaries:
Congregation Minor Seminaries: Religious Formation Houses :
Men Religious Houses: Women Religious Houses:

Charitable Institutions

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

Educational Institutions

Professional Colleges : Degree Colleges:
Parallel Colleges : Vocational / Technical Training Centres :
Higher Secondary / Junior Colleges : High Schools :
Upper Primary Schools: Lower Primary Schools:
Nurseries / Pre-Primary Schools :Presses & Media Centres :


The history of Adilabad Diocese is inevitably linked with the history of Chanda Mission as it sharess the common legacy and mission thrust. Adilabad Diocese encompasses the rich heritage of orient and apostolic succession of the occident. The blooming of the diocese is the fruit of the hard labour, strenuous efforts and sacrifices of the dedicated Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI) Missionaries since 1962. The newly joined missionary priests vowed to join the heroic path of the pioneering missionaries.

Chanda Mission/Chanda Diocese

Pope John XXIII established the first Syro-Malabar Ordinariate of Chanda on 31 March 1962 with Msgr. Januarius Palathuruthy CMI as its first Ecclesiastical Superior with the faculties of Apostolic Exarch. It was carved out from the Archdiocese of Nagpur. The Ordinariate was raised to the status of an Apostolic Exarchate on 29 July 1968 and Msgr Januarius was made its Apostolic Exarch. 
On 26 February 1977 Pope Paul VI raised it to the status of an Eparchy and Msgr. Januarius Palathuruthy was appointed its first bishop. It comprises the civil districts of Wardha, Chandrapur and Gadchiroli in Maharashtra state and Adilabad in Andhra Pradesh.
Catholic Diocese of Adilabad

The territory of Diocese of Adilabad is same as that of the civil district of Adilabad (16,210 square kilometers) in Telangana. Pope John Paul II constituted it by his Bull 'Ad Aptius Consulendum', as an independent diocese on July 23, 1999. Most Rev Joseph Kunnath CMI, was appointed the first bishop and consecrated on October 6, 1999. 

The CMI (Carmelites of Mary Immaculate) Congregation started evangelization work in this area in 1962 when the Ordinariate of Chanda was established. Prior to 1962, there were only two centres in Adilabad, one at Sirpur Kagaznagar with a resident priest and the other at Bellampally with a priest, visiting from Archdiocese of Nagpur. 

The first phase of the history of the Diocese unfolds with the appointment of Bishop Joseph Kunnath CMI, the architect and the first Bishop of Adilabad Diocese. At the time of bifurcation, Adilabad had 18 centers with resident priests and about 60 villages with 10,500 Catholics. At present there are 36 mission centers with residential priests and more than 100 substations, with 16,287 Catholics. Most of the Priests and Nuns are actively involved in Evangelization work besides Education, Social Work and Health Care in the diocese. 

Saint Kuriakose Elias Chavara is the Patron of the Diocese as he was one of the forerunners of the reformation movements of the 19th century India, especially in the Church in Kerala. The diocese belongs to the Syro-Malabar Church, an Oriental Catholic Church. The Southern boundary of the Diocese is Godavari River and on the East, West and the North borders lie in the State of Maharashtra. The adjacent dioceses are Chanda in the North and the East, Amaravathi in the West and Warangal in the South.

In accordance with the Divine plan, the second phase of the history of the Diocese opens up with the appointment of Rt. Rev. Dr. Prince Antony Panengadan as the second Bishop of Adilabad. Bishop Joseph Kunnath CMI resigned after turning 75 years of age, the canonical year for retirement of bishops. His Excellency’s consecration and installation ceremony was held at St Chavara Pastoral Centre, Thimmapur on the 29th October 2015. 

At present Adilabad is a flourishing Diocese where a lot of missionary activities are being carried out by the concerted efforts of priests and nuns. The diocese is having a limited number of priests and they are struggling to maintain the faith formation of the faithful. Since it is the beginning stage of the Church, faithful need to be cared well so that they may grow in good faith. The diocese is in need of many more dedicated priests. The people are really open to the word of God and the missionaries are accepted here. 

Former Bishops

Right Rev. Joseph Kunnath, CMI
Bishop Emeritus of Adilabad
Personal Details
Priestly Ordination:24-Apr-1972
Episcopal Ordination:6-Oct-1999

Tel(P): 09440242515
Email(P): bishopjosephadb@hotmail.com
Contact Details
Anudhavana Mancherial P.O. -504208 Mancherial Dt. (Telangana State)
Tel(O): 08736-258262
Email : (P) princeap13@gmail.com