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A CONCISE HISTORY OF THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PONDICHERRY & CUDDALORE
THE MISSION OF THE JESUITS AND THE CAPUCHINS
The great ancestor of our Archdiocese is the Carnatic Mission, which was started around the year 1700. This Carnatic Mission was known as Missions of the Coromandel Coast and also as the Malabar Mission.
Before the establishment of the Carnatic Mission in 1700, the Jesuit Fathers of the Madurai Mission, especially St. John de Britto came into Gingee Kingdom after 1660 and preached the Gospel up to the Palar river, South of Madras. Also, some religious belonging to various religious orders, looked after the spiritual needs of the European communities to a certain extent in their trading centres along the coastal areas like Cuddalore, Porto Novo etc., The French Capuchins first settled in Pondicherry in 1674 and the French Jesuits, expelled from Siam (Thailand) also took refuge in Pondicherry in 1688. But, in 1693, the Dutch chased away all the religious from Pondicherry and they could come back only in 1699. While the Capuchins were looking after the Europeans in Pondicherry, the French Jesuits organized the Carnatic Mission for the Indian people.
THE BOUNDARIES OF CARNATIC MISSION  Top  
The boundaries of the Carnatic mission were as follows:
  1. On the South and West, the Pennaiyar River, beyond which were the Madurai Mission and the Mysore mission.
  2. On the East, the Bay of Bengal, and
  3. On the North, Kurnool including the Krishna and Godavari areas near the sea shore.
JESUITS REPLACED BY FOREIGN MISSION FATHERS  Top  
The continual wars in the 18th century, the ruin of Pondicherry town in 1761 and the suppression of the Society of Jesus in 1773, hit badly this vast Carnatic Mission.
In 1776, the French Jesuit fathers were replaced at the order of Rome by the foreign Mission French Fathers. Although the Bishop of these new Missionaries had all the power of jurisdiction, he was not given the title "Vicar Apostolic", but called as the "Superior of the Mission of the Coromandel Coast." Rome successively gave him the jurisdiction over the Madurai, Coimbatore and Mysore areas, affected by the suppression of the Society of Jesus. So, around 1800, the extent of the Carnatic Mission was immense, but the labourers were very few.
THE FIRST VICAR APOSTOLIC AND THE FIRST ARCHBISHOP  Top  
The Carnatic Mission was reorganized when new Vicariates Apostolic were created: Vicariate Apostolic of Madras in 1832, of Madurai in 1836 and the Vicariates of Visakapattnam, Mysore and Coimbatore in 1845.
Pondicherry became a Vicariate Apostolic of the Coromandel coast, on 1-9-1836, with Mgr. Bonnand as its first Vicar Apostolic. This Vicariate Apostolic was raised to an Archbishopric on 01-09-1886, with Mgr . Laouenan as the first Archbishop.
Subsequently, subdivisions of the Archdiocese took place, erecting the new Dioceses of Kumbakonam in 1899 and Salem in 1930. In 1928 a great part of the present diocese of Vellore was separated from the Archdiocese of Pondicherry and attached to the Archdiocese of Madras. On a reorganization of the Archdiocese by Rome in 1969, Madurantagam Taluk of Chingleput District was transferred to the Archdiocese of Madras and the Tiruvannamalai Taluk to Vellore .
THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PONDICHERRY AND CUDDALORE  Top  
As the Archdiocese of Pondicherry extended over the Pondicherry Union territory and the South Arcot District of Madras State, it was given a new title by Rome: "Archdiocese of Pondicherry and Cuddalore" on 7-8-1953.
Originally, the Archdiocese was looking after the ex-French settlements of the Pondicherry Union territory namely Karaikal, Chandranagore, Mahe, and Yanam. Another ex-French settlement was also looked after by the MSFS Fathers in Vizagapattinam. Chandranagore was re-allocated to the Archdiocese of Calcutta and Mahe to the Diocese of Calicut in Kerala in 1949.
The present Archdiocese of Pondicherry & Cuddalore extends over the Pondicherry and Karaikal Districts of the Pondicherry Union Territory, Cuddalore district (excluding Chidambaram and kattumannarkoil Taluks) and Villupuram District in Tamil Nadu.
OUR FORMER PRELATES  Top  
    VICARS APOSTOLIC

  1. Brigot (1776-1791)
  2. Champenois (1791-1801)
  3. Hebert (1810-1835)
  4. Bonnand (1836-1861)
  5. Godelle (1861-1867)
  6. Laouenan (1868-1886)


  7. ARCHBISHOPS

  8. Laouenan (1886-1892)
  9. Joseph Gandy (1892-1909)
  10. MoreI (1909-1929)
  11. A.S.Colas (1930-1955)
  12. Rayappan Ambrose (1955- 1973)
  13. Venmani S.Selvanathar (1973-1992)
  14. Michael Augustine (1992 - 2004 )
LINKS TO KNOW MORE ON OUR HISTORY  Top  
  1. www.catholic-hierarchy.org
  2. www.en.wikisource.org
  3. www.cbcisite.com/Pondicherry
CONTRIBUTION FROM OUR ARCHDIOCESE TO OUR HOLY MOTHER CHURCH  Top  

SIMON CARDINAL LOURDUSAMY
A Short Profile
Date of Birth : February 05, 1924
Place : Kalleri , Tamil Nadu, India.
Secular Studies : St. Anne's High school ,Tindivanam(1937-39)
St. Joseph's Higher Secondary School, Cuddalore. (1939-1945)
Loyola College, Madras. (1952-1953)
Ecclesiastical Studies and years of Formation: St.Agnes' Minor Seminary (1939-1945)
St. Peter's Seminary, Bangalore (1946-1951)
Ordained On: 21st December 1951 at Tindivanam
Credentials: Doctorate in Canon Law from the Pontifical Urbaniana University in Rome (1953-1956).
Designations
  1. Archdiocesan Archivist (1952)
  2. Assistant, Atthipakkam Parish (8.3.1952 to 15-04-1952)
  3. Secretary to the Archbishop (May 1952 to June 1952)
  4. Chancellor, Secretary to the Archbishop, editor of Sarvaviabi (The Catholic Weekly Magazine run by the Archdiocese) and the Choir Master of the Cathedral. (03-12-1956 to 18-07-1962)
  5. Nominated Bishop Auxiliary to the Archbishop of Bangalore (02-07-1962)
  6. Received his Episcopal consecration on the following August 22, 1962 from Archbishop Rayappan Ambrose, with Bishops Rajarethinam Sundaram and Daniel Arulswamy serving as co-consecrators in Pondicherry.
  7. Attended the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965).
  8. On November 9, 1964, he was made the Coadjutor Archbishop of Bangalore, and then succeeded Thomas Pothacamury as the Archbishop of Bangalore on January 11, 1968.
  9. 05-03-1971 appointed Joint Secretary to the Congregation of Propagation of Faith.
  10. On February 26, 1973 appointed as the Secretary of the Evangelization of Peoples and Vice Chancellor of the Urbaniana University.
  11. His Holiness Pope John Paul II raised Archbishop Lourdusamy to the state of a Cardinal Deacon in the consistory of May 25, 1985.
  12. October 30, 1985 to May 24, 1991 he appointed Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches.
  13. He became Cardinal Protodeacon (the senior Cardinal Deacon) on April 5, 1993, and served as a special papal legate at the funeral of Mother Teresa on September 13, 1997.
  14. On April 5, 1993 was appointed protodeacon. He chose to become a Cardinal Priest on January 29, 1996.
  15. With a sense of accomplishment our Cardinal now at 84 is residing in Rome.
Address : 64, Via Dei Corridor ,00193 - Roma, Italia
Tel : 00390669884796, 00390669885338
Fax : 00390669882043
AN EULOGY TO OUR CARDINAL  Top  
On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Episcopal ordination of his Eminence Simon Cardinal Lourdusamy our late Pope John Paul II wrote:
" Now when we look back on your life briefly and consider what you have achieved, it is not to be wondered at why you, together with us should give thanks to God"
The Archdiocese of Pondicherry and Cuddalore has many singular distinctions to its credit. Our contribution to the Mother Church in the person of our Cardinal has added a precious diadem to the crown of the Catholic Church. The life of our Cardinal is a titanic epitome that speaks volumes about his supremacy in various fields. From his very childhood he has always been an outstanding cynosure of all who had the privilege of knowing and seeing him. His family bequeathed to him a deep faith, a retentive memory and an inborn intelligence. All these had yearned for him the title 'prodigious child'.
THE EMINENT PERSONALITY
The Cardinal is a unique and eminent personality in every sense of the word. He is a rare combination of sincerity coupled with simplicity, and erudition coupled with elegant grace. He is known for his calm and composed approach to the issues. For him an unresolved problem within the stipulated time is an hatch house for further magnified problems. This has yearned for him rich dividends in all his offices. He is a perfectionist with the reputation of turning the impossible, possible. One can see in our Cardinal a great linguist, educationist, speaker, writer, musician and above all a remarkable humanist. The entire gamut of this superb, eminent personality of the Cardinal is mirrored in his curriculum vitae. On the whole he is a multifaceted personality with an action filled life. He is the 4th cardinal of India and has the honour of becoming the first curial cardinal of Asia and also the first Tamilian to occupy such a high ranking portfolio in our Catholic Church.
HIS INTELLECTUAL CALIBER
" This thin brother Lourdusamy will end up in Rome and become one day a Cardinal"
These words when uttered by Fr. Guillerm a French missionary and a professor at St. Peter's Seminary, Bangalore was never thought to be prophesy until it became true on May 25, 1985. The Cardinal is gifted with matured talents of high order. He has used it with 'summa cum laudae' to bring his motto to a fulfillment, "aedificare domum dei" - to build the house of god. His attention even to the minutest details of any affair and an unlimited capacity of hard work has slowly earned for him the Eminence. He has exceptional achievements to his credit. He strived hard to realize the statements of Vatican council -II in the indigenization and inculturation of the local churches all over the world. He has written 13 books and many Governments and Universities have conferred and honoured him with doctorates and awards. An acquaintance with our Cardinal will make everyone acknowledge his versatility and accept that there is no field which the Cardinal has never touched and adorned. His hard and persevering work with an amalgamation of meticulous planning has promised him greater prospects in his life. He is an avant-garde to show how duty well done can elevate a man to soaring heights.
AN EBULLIENT PHILANTHROPIST
The Cardinal was always simple, self-effacing, considerate and cordial. The title Prince of the church never fenced him in being a humanist. He does not stand on formalities when humanism takes the priority. His proverbial generosity could not see anyone retiring half hearted. Those who are solaced by his munificence are many. His Eminence has an open sympathetic mind that can reach out to the farthest horizons and embrace all kinds of people without any distinction. The exquisite courtesy with which he deals with the people is remarkable. A friendly smile, a kind and gentle word on his lips impress everyone. All those who wish to have an audience with our Cardinal are sure to part him with a great sense of gratitude and contentment. His humanistic concerns are edifying and remind us that we too can make our lives sublime.
THE BISHOPS  Top  

MOST REV. DR. UBAGARASAMY BERNADETH
BISHOP OF COIMBATORE 1940

MOST REV. DR. MARK GOPU
AUXILIARY BISHOP OF PONDICHERRY 1948
ARCHBISHOP OF HYDERABAD1953

MOST REV. DR. JOSEPH THUMMA
BISHOP OF VIJAYAWADA 1970

MOST REV. DR. MICHAEL DURAISAMY
BISHOP OF SALEM 1974

MOST REV.DR. MICHAEL AUGUSTINE
AUXILIARY BISHOP OF MADRAS-MYLAPORE 1978
BISHOP OF VELLORE 1981 AND
ARCHBISHOP OF PONDICHERRY 1992

MOST REV. DR. P. YVON AMBROISE
BISHOP OF TUTICORIN 2005
OUR ARCHBISHOP  Top  
Name : Most Rev. Dr. Antony Anandarayar D.D., D.C.L.
Date of Birth : 18.07.1945
Place of Birth : Varadarajanpet
Diocese of Origin : Kumbakonam
Father's Name : Mr. Antony
Mother's Name : Mrs. Collet Mary
Date of Ordination : 21.12.1971
Nominated Bishop : 12.01.1997
Consecration :29.01.1997
Nominated archBishop : 10-06-2004
Installation : 05-07-2004
Pallium day: 06-09-2004
Motto : Servire in Fide et in Amore
Minor Seminary : St. Agnes' Seminary, Cuddalore
Major Seminary : St. Peter's Pontificial Seminary, Bangalore
Diocese : Archdiocese of Pondicherry and Cuddalore
Credentials : Doctorate in Missiology, Doctorate in Canon Law
Designations
  1. 1972-1976 - St. Joseph's Boarding, Cuddalore
  2. 1976-1981 - Higher Studies, Rome
  3. 1981 - Staff, St. Peter's Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore
  4. 1982-1990 - Vice Rector, St. Peter's Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore
  5. 1987-1996 - Director, M.C.L, St. Peter's Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore
  6. 1990-1996 - Rector, St. Peter's Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore
  7. 1997 - 2004 - Bishop of Ootacamund
  8. 2004 - Archbishop of Pondicherry and Cuddalore
Languages Known
Tamil, English, German, French, Italian, and Kanada
At Present
  1. Chairman, CCBI Commission for Canon law and other legislative texts.
  2. Chairman, TNBC Commission for Liturgy
  3. Member, Board of Administration, Good Shepherd Seminary, Coimbatore
  4. Member, Board of Administration, St. Peter's Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore
  5. President, Board of Administration, St. John’s Propaedeutic Seminary, Cuddalore-1
THE ADMINISTRATIVE SOCIETIES  Top  
LE CONSEIL D'ADMINISTRATION DE L'ARCHDIOCESE DE PONDICHERY
Le Conseil D'Administration De L'Archdiocese De Pondichery is a Society registered under the Societies Registration Act 1860 with Registration No.43 of 1973 and registered as a Religious & Charitable Society under section 12AA(b) of the Income Tax Act 1961. Originally, the Council of Administration of Archdiocese was constituted in the year 1939 with Msgr.A.S.Colas, Archbishop of Pondicherry as its Chairman, Msgr.J.M.Gopu, Auxiliary Bishop of Pondicherry and Rev.Fr.H.Cailleault, Procurator as Members of the Society during the French settlement in India.
Le Conseil D'Administration De L'Archdiocese De Pondichery is the Society to establish, maintain and administer Churches, Educational institutions, Social institutes, dispensaries, hospitals, orphanages and other related institutions to promote the object of the society and to perform works of charity for those in need irrespective of race, caste, community or creed in the Archdiocese of Pondicherry.
The Administrators
Most Rev.Dr.A.Anandarayar : Chairman
Very Rev.Fr.A.Arulanandam : Vice-Chairman
Rev.Fr.C.Joseph Arumaiselvam : Secretary & Treasurer
THE SOUTH ARCOT DIOCESAN CORPORATION  Top  
The South Arcot Diocesan Corporation is a company incorporated under the Indian Companies Act 1913 with registration No.3 of 1934 and registered as a Charitable Trust/Institution under section 12A(a) of the Income Tax Act. The South Arcot Diocesan Corporation is the Company to establish and administer Churches, Educational institutions, Social institutes, dispensaries, hospitals, orphanages, convents and other religious, educational and charitable institutions to promote the object of the Company in the Archdiocese of Pondicherry & Cuddalore.
The Board of Administration
Most Rev.Dr.A.Anandarayar : Director General
Very Rev.Fr.A.Arulanandam : Director
Rev.Fr.L.A.Arul Pushpam : Secretary
Rev.Fr.C.Joseph Arumaiselvam : Treasurer
THE ARCHBISHOP'S HOUSEHOLD  Top  
The daily activities of the Archbishop's house are performed by the following members of the respective managements. Their primary role is to provide a safe and serene work environment for the Archbishop, Curia and the Priests of the Archdiocese.
OFFICE MANAGEMENT
  1. C.Joseph Juvenal
  2. S.Bhaskarane
  3. S.A.Pinto
  4. M.Felix Sagayaradge
  5. J.Pascal @ Arokiasamy
 
FACILITIES MANAGEMENT
  1. M.Stanislaus
  2. R.Aseernathan
  3. Theresal
  4. A.Anitha
  5. Gabriel Mary
  6. Sedhu
  7. D.Adaikala Mary
  8. Sindamary
  9. M.Gilbert
  10. Lily
  11. Samson
  12. M.Prabhu
  13. James
  14. Arockiamary
 Top