Diocese of Hyderabad
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The Dioceses comprises the entire southern Sindh province, except the Karachi metropolis. With an area of 137,386 square kilometers, it has the biggest tribal apostolate in the country. Hyderabad city is the second largest city in the province.

Language

More than half of the local population speaks Sindhi. Urdu, Saraiki and Parkari Kohli other languages are also spoken.

History

As early as 1860, Christian missionary society missionaries travelled all over Sindh province distributing Christian literature in Sindhi and Urdu languages.

Conservative Baptist Foreign Missionary Society CBFMS began missionary work in Sindh province after being invited by the West Pakistan Christian council and the Anglican Bishop Lawrence Woolmer of Church of Pakistan. The early local Christians in the region were converted from Hinduism and the tiny Church was Anglican. Missionaries from New Zealand worked on the first Sindhi Bible which was published in 1954. The smallest of the Christian groups were in Dadu, south west Sindh province, where Sunday services began in 1956. A mission house and a hospital in Sukkur were the only Church institution by that time.

Bulla "Eius in Terris" created Hyderabad diocese on April 28, 1958 and officially erected it on Aug.23, 1958. The territory was carved out of Karachi archdiocese and included a sizeable part of Balochistan province and almost the whole Sindh province. On Nov. 9 2001, Pope John Paul II raised Balochistan province to the status of Apostolic vicariate. When erected, the diocese did not have a single diocesan priest.

The Baptist ministry began yearly retreats and the first of three day program was held in Nov. 1961 at a government rest house in Larkana district. The first one day retreat for women was organized in 1962. The ministry began to grown by 1964 in the mixed Christian and Hindu sweeper colonies and outlying villages wher isolated Christian families lived. Several Marwaris, Kohlis and Punjabis later enrolled in Bible Training institute in Hyderabad. By 1966, the old city of Hyderabad had a large St.Philip's Anglican Church and several Roman Catholic Churches. At that time, Methodists worked in Kotri.

By 1971 the political upheavals dwindled CBFMS missionaries in Sindh. The mission was registered by the government as Indus Christian Fellowship (Baptist) and Sindh Evangelical Baptist Association was formed in 70s. The association linked Baptist Churches in upper Sindh and Karachi. Canadian missionaries arrived in 1983 and the Sunday school classes began in 80s. (Source: Jars of Clay: Ordinary Christians on an Extraordinary Mission in Southern Pakistan by Pauline A Brown)

Climate

Hyderabad diocese is situated in a subtropical region; it is hot in the summer and cold in winter. It is divided into three climatic regions. Air is generally dry in the upper Sindh province while central region's maximum temperature typically reaches 43-44 C (109-111 F). Lower parts of the diocese has a damper and humid maritime climate affected by the southwestern winds in summer and northeastern winds in winter

Economy

The diocese has the second largest economy in Pakistan. About a quarter of the agricultural contribution to Pakistan's GDP is produced in the southern Sindh province. Performance wise, its best sector is the manufacturing sector. Agriculture is very important in the province which is the richest province in natural resources of gas, petrol, and coal.

Topography

Hyderabad Diocese is bounded by the Thar Desert to the east, the Kirthar Mountains to the west, and the Arabian Sea in the south. In the centre is a fertile plain around the Indus river.

The diocese occupies the southern portion of the Indus valley, a wide, extremely flat plain that slopes very gently toward the Arabian Sea. In south, the plain slopes gently southeastwards away from the river toward the coastal zone and the sea.

Education

According to latest data available at the website of the Sindh province, the literacy rate is estimated at 45.29%. Most of them are urban males in the province.