Home News Pope Francis appoints five new bishops, promotes one in India

Pope Francis appoints five new bishops, promotes one in India

The Catholic Church in India on February 17 witnessed another round of mass appointments of bishops.

On the same day, Pope Francis accepted the resignations of one archbishop and five bishops.

The appointments and resignations were announced at noon in Rome and its corresponding time in India.

The latest appointments are for the dioceses of Purnea in Bihar, Khandwa and Indore in Madhya Pradesh, Aurangabad in Maharashtra, and Khammam and Nalgonda in Telangana, according to the Holy See Press Office.

The resignations are from Archbishop Prakash Mallavarapu of Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh, Bishops Ambrose Rebello of Aurangabad, and Chacko Thottumarickal of Indore.

The Pope has elevated Coadjutor Bishop Bernard Lancy Pinto of Aurangabad as the diocese’s new bishop. He was born on August 20, 1963, in Vikroli in Mumbai. He was ordained a priest on April 29, 1997.

The new bishops-elect are Thomas Mathew Kuttimackal of Indore, Francis Tirkey of Purnea, Fransalian Karnam Dhaman Kumar of Nalgonda, Augustine Madathikunnel of Khandwa and Prakash Sagili of Khammam.

- Newsletter -

The latest appointments come a month after the Pope named bishops for five dioceses and an auxiliary for another.

On January 13, he accepted the resignations of three bishops.

Earlier on December 30, 2023, the Pope transferred Bishop Vincent Aind of Bagdogra in West Bengal to Jharkhand as the new archbishop of Ranchi, after accepting the resignation of Jesuit Archbishop Felix Toppo.

On the same day, he promoted Auxiliary Bishop Barthol Barretto of Bombay as the bishop of Nashik and named Father Peter Rumal Kharadi as the bishop of Jhabua in Madhya Pradesh and Father Bernard Lancy Pinto as Aurangabad.

Bishop-elect Tirkey was until now the director of Purnea diocese’s Social Service Centre. He was born on January 24, 1961, in Kolodiah. After studying philosophy at St Albert’s College in Ranchi, and theology at St Joseph’s Interdiocesan Seminary in Mangalore, he was ordained a priest on May 17, 1993, for Dumka diocese. He was incardinated in the Purnea diocese when it was created.

Bishop-elect Kuttimackal is currently the parish priest of Indore’s cathedral parish. He was born on February 25, 1962, at Kalloorkad in Kerala’s Kothamangalam diocese. He studied philosophy and theology at Khrist Premalaya Philosophate and Theologate Seminary in Bhopal. He was ordained a priest on November 25, 1987 for Indore.

The new bishop of Nalgonda has been serving as the parish priest of S. Bartolomäus in Münster, Germany where he was the delegate superior of the Fransalians in that country.

Bishop-elect Kumar was born on November 16, 1963, in Vijayanagaram, in the Visakhapatnam archdiocese (then a diocese). After his novitiate in Visakhapatnam, he studied philosophy at Suvidya College in Bangalore and theology at the Jnana Deepa Vidyapeeth in Pune. His perpetual vows were on December 3, 1989. He was ordained a priest on December 17, 1990.

Bishop-elect Madathikunnel, until now administrator of the Khandwa diocese, was born on July 9, 1983, at Koolivaya in the Mananthavady diocese of Kerala. He studied philosophy and theology at St Charles Seminary in Nagpur and was ordained a priest on April 18, 1994, for Khandwa.

Khammam’s new bishop Sagili was until now parish priest of St John Bosco in Chittor in the Cuddapah diocese and coordinator of the CCBI Health Apostolate. He was born on January 2, 1957. After attending St Peter’s Minor Seminary in Cuddapah and the Christ the King Seminary in Vijayawada, he continued his formation at the Sacred Heart Seminary of Poonamallee, Chennai. He was ordained a priest on April 25, 1884.

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