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Three new Bishops for India
July 26, 2013: On Friday, the Holy Father accepted the resignation of bishop Lukas Kerketta, SVD from the pastoral governance of the Diocese of Sambalpur, India, in accordance with canon 401 § 1 of the Code of Canon Law, and appointed, Fr. Niranjan Singh, of the clergy of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar, Professor of Theology and Moderator of the seminarians in the Archdiocese of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar as Bishop in his place. On Friday the Pope also appointed Fr. Kishore Kumar Kujur of the diocese of Sambalpur, Professor of Sacred Scripture at the Regional Seminary of Orissa, as the Bishop of Rourkela and Fr. Paul Mattekatt of the clergy of Diphu, Pastor and Director of the Catholic school in Japrajan, as the Bishop of the Diocese of Diphu.
Fr. Niranjan Singh, was born July 20, 1961, in Kottama, Diocese of Berhampur, Orissa. He began his schooling in the native village and then continued his studies at the High School Vijai Raikia. After studying in St. John Vianney Minor Seminary of Calcutta, he continued his philosophy at the Papal Seminary in Pune. He completed his post Graduate studies in Commerce from the Adivasi College Balliguda and he completed his theological studies at the Khristo Jyoti Mohavidyaloyo Regional Theologate of Sason. He holds a Masters in English Literature at the University of Berhampur, an MA in Theology at the Vidya Jyoti in Delhi and a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology at the Pontifical Urban University in Rome. He was ordained a priest on 29 April 1991 for the Archdiocese of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar.
After ordination he held the following positions:
1991-1992: Assistant priest in Raikia parish;
1992-1993: Assistant priest Modasoro parish;
1993-1994: Assistant priest Balliguda parish;
1994-1998: Secretary of the Archbishop;
1998-2001: Studies in Delhi;
2001-2002: Lecturer at the Khristo Jyoti Mohavidyaloyo Regional Theologate of Sason;
2002-2005: Studies for a doctorate in Rome;
Since 2006: Lecturer at the Khristo Jyoti Mohavidyaloyo Regional Theologate of Sason and Moderator of the seminarians of the Archdiocese of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar;
2008: Animator of Lay Apostolate, Village Adoption and Tuition;
since 2008: Animator Dialogue and Ecumenism.
The Diocese of Sambalpur (1951), is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar. It has an area of 37,254 square kilometers and a population of 7,565,323 inhabitants, of whom 42,656 are Catholics. There are 22 parishes served by 131 priests (48 diocesan priests and 83 religious), 122 religious brothers, 278 nuns and 28 seminarians.
Fr. Kishore Kumar Kujur, was born January 6, 1964, in Gaibira, Diocese of Rourkela, Orissa. He graduated from Saint Francis de Sales College, Nagpur and entered the Minor Seminary in Sambalpur in 1980. He then from 1982 to 1984, underwent the Orientation at St. John's Regional Seminary, continuing his studies in philosophy at St. Charles Seminary, Nagpur, 1984-1987. He completed his theological studies at Khristo Jyoti Mohavidyaloyo Regional Theologate of Sason. He has a Bachelor of Arts, a Licentiate and a Doctorate in Sacred Scripture. He was ordained a priest on 7 February 1993 and incardinated in the Diocese of Sambalpur.
After ordination he held the following positions:
1993-1995: Assistant parish priest in Balangir;
1996-2000: Licentiate Studies in the Biblicum, Rome,
2001-2003: Professor of Sacred Scripture at the Regional Seminary of Orissa;
since 2003: Head of the seminarians of the Diocese of Sambalpur;
2004-2006: Studies for a doctorate at the Angelicum in Rome;
since 2007: Professor of Sacred Scripture at the Regional Seminary of Orissa;
since 2010: Member of the College of Consultors;
since 2010: Member of the Council of Priests.
The Diocese of Rourkela (1979), suffragan of the Archdiocese of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar, has an area of 9,675 square kilometers and a population of 1,829,000 inhabitants, of whom 238,085 are Catholics. There are 41 parishes served by 164 priests (79 diocesan and 85 religious), 183 religious brothers, 372 sisters and 24 major seminarians.
The Diocese of Rourkela, is vacant from February 11, 2011, following the transfer of Bishop John Barwa, SVD, as the Metropolitan Archbishop of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar.
Fr. Mattekatt Paul, was born in Kerela on June 1, 1961. He hails from a Catholic family in the Syro-Malabar Church. He studied at St. Paul's Seminary, at St. Anthony's College and Christ the King College, Shillong. He then completed his period of "regency" in the parishes of Dokmoka and Chokihola, teaching in local parish schools and performing pastoral internship in the villages. He completed theology at the Papal Seminary in Pune. On December 31, 1988 he was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Diphu, recently erected by the division of the Archdiocese of Shillong-Guwahati.
After his ordination he held the following positions:
1989 - 1991: assistant priest of Holy Family Parish, Japralangso, and Vice-Dean of the local parish school;
1991 - 1996: Secretary of the bishop and diocesan chancellor of Diphu;
1996 - 1999: Studies for the Licentiate in Canon Law in Rome at the Pontifical Urban University and Master's degree in Canon Law at the same University. In the course of higher education he has also spent a short time in England, at St. Anselm Institute of Kent, where he obtained a Diploma in Pastoral Counselling;
1999 - 2005: Diocesan Treasurer and Director of the Social Work Office;
2005 - 2008: Parish Vicar of Christ Parish in Iyoti Dokmoka;
since 2008: Pastor of Holy Family Parish, Japrajan, and Dean of the annexed parish school. He is also President of the Priestly Fraternity of the Diocese of Diphu.
The Diocese of Diphu (1983), suffragan of the Archdiocese of Guwahati, has an area of 15,222 square kilometers and a population of 1,178,809 inhabitants, of whom 57,165 are Catholics. There are 22 parishes, served by 55 priests (29 diocesan and 26 religious), 5 religious brothers, 156 nuns and 9 seminarians.
The Diocese of Diphu, has been vacant since April 9, 2011, following the transfer of the Bishop John Moolachira as Coadjutor Archbishop of Guwahati.