Diocese of Idukki
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The Diocese of Idukki belongs to Syro Malabar Rite. The diocese has an area of 3,000 square kilometers comprising the Idukki district of Kerala surrounded by the eparchies of Kothamangalam, Kanjirappally, Palai and the Archdiocese of Madurai. The Catholics of the diocese belong to the ancient St. Thomas Christian Community.

Population

The total population of the diocesan territory is 1,129, 221 (as per the Census of 2001). Idukki has been a multi-ethnic and multi religious region.

Language

Malayalam and Tamil are in use in the diocesan territory.

History

The history of the Church in Idukki district begins with the migration of the people from other parts of Kerala to this high ranges in search of fertile land to cultivate. When the diocese of Kothamangalam was established in 1956 there were only 17 parishes and mission stations in high ranges. In 1963 the high range mission region was divided into four foranes. Pope John Paul II erected Idukki diocese in 2003 by bifurcating the diocese of Kothamangalam on Jan. 15, 2003 and Father Mathew Anikuzhikattil was appointed as the first bishop of the diocese. The bull of erection Maturscens Catholic Fides was promulgated on Dec. 19., 2002. The eparchy is dedicated to Mar Sleeva (St. Thomas, the Apostle).

Transportation

The territory is connected with roads only. Rail is unavailable. There are some places in the district which are not accessible even by roads. The nearest airport is at Kochi which is 110 kilometers away from the district and the nearest railway station is at Kottayam which is 114 kilometers away.

Climate

The diocesan territory has moderate climate, with temperature varying between 0 to 30 degrees Celsius. The district receives plenty of rains from both the South-West monsoon during June-August and the North -East monsoon during October-November. South-West monsoon and North-East Monsoon happen during June-July and October-November respectively. The normal rainfall is 3265 mm.

Economy

The economy of Idukki diocese is mainly based on agriculture. A major part of the population depends on agriculture for their livelihood. Animal husbandry is the secondary source of income for a major portion of the people. Idukki is an industrially backward district in Kerala.

Telecommunication

The level of telecommunications infrastructure is very low. Though most of the homes have television and telephone, access to internet is very limited. There are no television and radio broadcasting stations in the diocesan territory.

Topography

The name of the district Idukki is derived from the Malayalam word idukku which means a narrow gorge. The diocese is covered by the mountains, hills and dense forests. Because of its special landscape it is also known as the diocese of the mountains. High ranges vary in altitude from about 600 meters above mean sea level to more than 1,800 meters.

Education

Literacy rate in the diocesan territory is 88.69 percent, higher than the national average of 59.5 percent.

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