Diocese of Jaipur is newly erected Diocese in the year 2005. It is bifurcated from the Ajmer-Jaipur Diocese. It consists of 12 civil districts of Rajasthan namely; Alwar, Bikaner, Churu, Dausa, Hanumangarh, Jaipur, Jhunjhunu, Karauli, Nagaur, Sawai Madhopur, Sikar and Sri Ganaganagar. Most Rev. Oswal Lewis, Coadjutor Bishop of Meerut was appointed by the Holy See as the first Bishop of Jaipur on July 20, 2005.
Jaipur being the capital city of the state has a big population and we'll developed but it has very minute Christian presence. As the state Rajasthan covers the huge geographical territory it has huge possibility of proclaiming the Good News but due to lack of Christian presence, the area was neglected. When the diocese was erected, it had hardly a dozen of priests. But now the number is growing besides other religious and diocesan priests have come forward to help the diocese. The diocese has around 65 priests including the religious priests and less than 5000 Catholics in whole of the diocese.
Bp. Oswald has been trying his best to reach out far and wide in his diocese. Now the Diocese has expanded it's mission and opened new parishes, mission stations and schools in places like: Lalarpura, Phulera, Madramputa, Bagrana, Mahua, Hinduan City, Kuchaman City, Nevta, Chaumu, Makrana and Didwana.
Besides reaching out to far and wide, Bp. Oswald is trying hard to update his Diocese to make the Christian presence felt. In this regard he has newly constructed his residence and a pastoral center that can contain more than 100 people, where with the help of Fr. Paul Dsouza, a diocesan priest from Varanasi, time to time programs are conducted. And to keep updated the diocese with media, the prelate has inaugurated the office of mass media, ecumenism and inter-religious dialogue with the help of Dr. Fr. John Paul svd, a well known media expert.
To go back to the beginning of Christian presence in Jaipur, it is noted that in 1728, then the great king Maharaja Jai Sing, approached the Jesuits to start their education ministry. And thus Fr. Emmanuel de Figuredo arrived in Jaipur in 1728 and with him came other Jesuits. Later Rome sent two Bavarian Fathers, Stroli and Gabelsperger arrived in Jaipur in 1740. And thereafter the mission continued. The first church in Jaipur stands at Ghat Gate due to generosity of the state gift of land and the generous contribution for the construction of Sacred Heart Church that was built in1871.
The prelate added, "There is the need to Make use of media at the service of the church so we need to make use of them to serve the poor and and work for the Kingdom. Migrant problem and covid has created new situations so there are many challenges ahead to deal with. Not only sickness or health but also many other issues as migrants, unemployment, education, relationships etc. Present crisis we need to make use of this technology to deal with these problems. "
"As the new director of media, ecumenism and inter-religious dialogue, I wish to reach out to many more people and not just the small number of Christians. It is a big challenge to begin a huge task but it is said, every great thing has a small beginnings." The newly appointed director Fr. John Paul added.
Dr. John Paul, svd.