Simla Chandigarh Diocese
Bio: Simla Chandigarh Diocese has a long history. The Archdiocese of Simla was created in 1910 when it was separated from the Archdiocese of Agra, the mother diocese of all North India. Very Rev. Fr. Anselm E.J. Kenneally O.F.M. Cap. Superior General of the Friars minor Capuchins was appointed as the first Archbishop of this new Archdiocese, and he was consecrated in Rome on 1st January, 1911. The church of St. Michael and St. Joseph in Simla built in 1885 by Lord Ripon the Catholic Viceroy of India became the Cathedral of new Archdiocese. It is during this period that the Archdiocese witnessed great changes, both political and social The greatest of these was the partition and Independence of the country. A new diocese of Lahore was formed in Pakistan. The realignment of the states, the creation of the new city of Chandigarh and its Union Territory status have all influenced the history of the diocese and have had their effect on the structure and development of the diocese. When the political capital of the country was shifted to Delhi, the Catholic population was placed under the jurisdiction of the diocese of Simla, thus becoming the Delhi-Simla Archdiocese and the See shifted to Delhi. Archbishop Sylvester P. Mulligan was the first Archbishop of Delhi-Simla Archdiocese, which comprised of the present states of Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and the Union-Territory of Chandigarh. Archbishop Sylvester P. Mulligan was succeeded by Archbishop Joseph Alexander Fernandes. In 1959 the Archdiocese of Delhi-Simla was dismembered to form Simla as an independent diocese and thus beginning the history of current diocese with Bishop John Burke as its pastor.