Theotonius Amal Ganguly

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The Most Reverend
Theotonious Amal Ganguly, C.S.C.
Archbishop of Dhaka
Predecessor Lawrence Leo Graner
Successor Michael Rozario
Consecration 7 October 1960
Personal details
Born 18 January 1920
East Bengal, British India (now Bangladesh)
Died 2 September 1977 (aged 57)
Dhaka, Bangladesh
Nationality Bangladeshi
Denomination Catholicism
Profession Priest

Theotonious Amal Ganguly, C.S.C. (born 18 January 1920, Hashnabad, East Bengal, India (present Bangladesh)- 2 September 1977) was Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Dhaka from 1967 until his death on 2 September 1977. Archbishop Ganguly was a religious of the Congregation of Holy Cross.


The local bishop sent him to the major seminary, called St. Albert's Seminary, run by the Jesuit Fathers at Ranchi of Bihar State, India. As usual, he was liked and appreciated by both the professors and seminarians for his studies and humble behaviour.

He successfully completed two years of philosophy and four years of theology studies at the seminary and, on June 6, 1946, was ordained a diocesan priest at St. Mary's Cathedral, Ranchi, by Jesuit Bishop Oscar Sevrin.[1]

In 1947, newly consecrated Bishop Lawrence Leo Graner, C.S.C., of the Diocese of Dhaka, sent Father Ganguly to the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, for higher studies in philosophy. First, he completed his M.A. in Philosophy and then, in 1951, he received his Ph.D. degree in Philosophy. His doctoral dissertation, called Purush and Prakriti (Self and Nature): A Philosophical Appraisal of Patanjali - Samkhya - Yoga. (Patañjali, an ancient Hindu philosopher promoting yoga for inner contemplation, was born in India in about 250 B.C.). Father Ganguly was the first Bengali Christian to obtain a Ph.D. degree.[2]

While at Notre Dame, Father Ganguly expressed interest in joining the Congregation of Holy Cross. Sent to the novitiate in Jordan, Minnesota, on August 16, 1952, he made his Religious Profession on August 16, 1952 before returning to Dhaka in October of that year.[3]

Appointed a professor of Logic and English at Notre Dame College, founded by Holy Cross in Dhaka in 1949, he became the Dean of Studies in 1954, and, in 1958, he was appointed Vice Principal of the college. After Father James L. Martin died suddenly in 1960, Father Ganguly succeeded him as the principal. Again, he broke new ground as the first Bangali to hold the position.[4]

In 1960, Ganguly was consecrated a bishop and dually appointed the Titular Bishop of Oliva as well as the Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Dhaka. Five years later he was dually appointed Titular Archbishop of Drizipara and the Coadjutor Archbishop of Dhaka. In November 1967 he became the Metropolitan Archbishop of Dhaka.

He was also the President of Pakistan Catholic Bishops’ Conference (P.C.B.C.) (1971–1973) and President of Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Bangladesh (C.B.C.B.) (1973–1977).


He died suddenly on 2 September 1977 of a heart attack.


Initiation of canonization process[edit]

Archbishop Ganguly's canonization process started in 2006. Archbishop Paulinus Costa of Dhaka, on September 2 of that year, in an official ceremony at St. Mary's Cathedral in Dhaka, introduced the causes and opened the diocesan inquiry on Archbishop Theotonius Amal Ganguly, C.S.C. The process of his canonization is at the first stage known as "Servant of God".

See also[edit]