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Vicariate Apostolic of Changanacherry
VICARIATE APOSTOLIC OF CHANGANACHERRY (CHANGANACHERENSIS)
Located in Travancore, British India; created 28 July, 1896. Its first actual vicar Apostolic, Mathew Makil, titular Bishop of Tralles, was consecrated 25 Oct., 1896. This vicariate was established to meet the needs of Native Indian Christians of the Syro-Malabar Rite. It includes five deaneries of Nordist Syrians (descendants of native Malabar castes) and two Sudists (descendants of fourth century immigrant Syrians), a social distinction originating long ago in their residence at Cranganore. Its territory extends south as far as Purakad, and is bounded on the north by Vicariate of Ernakulam, on the east by the Ghats, and on the west by the Gulf of Arabia. The Catholic population numbers 140,172 in a total of 900,000. There are 95 churches and 57 chapels; the native clergy number 283 (253 secular, 30 regular); besides these there are 20 brothers. There are four Carmelite monasteries. The convents of religious women have 70 members (35 Carmelites, 20 Visitation nuns, and 15 Clarisses). The annual conversions reach about 1000. There are 75 theological seminarists with 20 pupils in preparatory work. In 3 English (boarding) high schools there are 650 boys, and in 4 middle schools 360 girls. In 418 native parish schools there are 14,328 pupils. The Catholic press is represented by one native Malayalam weekly paper and 2 monthly periodicals. The Jacobite Syrians and the Protestants number 13,000; the pagan population about 600,000.
Missiones Catholicæ (Rome, 1907), 824-25; Illustrated Catholic Missions (London, March, June, 1903); La Ver aroma (30 May, 1903); Messenger of the Sacred Heart (April, 1897); Census of India (1901), XXVII, Travancore, part I, 109-110, and Cochin, part I, 44-45, 60.