Roman Catholic Diocese of Varanasi

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Diocese of Varanasi
Dioecesis Varanasiensis
वाराणसी के सूबा
Saint Mary's Cathedral in Varanasi-1.jpg
Country India
Ecclesiastical province Agra
Metropolitan Agra
Area 21,395 km2 (8,261 sq mi)
- Total
- Catholics
(as of 2010)
18,259 (0.1%)
Rite Latin Rite
Cathedral St Mary’s Cathedral in Varanasi
Patron saint St John the Baptist
Current leadership
Pope Francis
Bishop Eugene Joseph
Metropolitan Archbishop Albert D'Souza
Emeritus Bishops Patrick Paul D’Souza
Website of the Diocese

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Varanasi (Latin: Varanasien(sis)) is a Latin suffragan diocese in the Ecclesiastical province of Agra in northern India' s vast state Uttar Pradesh.

Its cathedral episcopal see is St. Mary’s Cathedral in the city of Varanasi.


  • Established on July 11, 1946 as Apostolic Prefecture of Gorakhpur, on territory split off from the Diocese of Allahabad, exempt, i.e. directly subject to the Holy See
  • September 17, 1958: Renamed as Apostolic Prefecture of Benares-Gorakhpur
  • Promoted on June 5, 1970 as Diocese of Banaras (Benares), losing its exempt status by becoming a suffragan of the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Agra
  • May 14, 1971: Renamed as Diocese of Varanasi (as the city had changed its name).


(all Latin, Roman Rite)

Apostolic Prefects of Gorakhpur
Apostolic Prefects of Benares-Gorakhpur
  • Joseph Emil Malenfant, O.F.M. Cap. (see above September 17, 1958 – 1970)
Bishops of Banaras
  • Patrick Paul D’Souza (June 5, 1970 – May 14, 1971 see below)
Bishops of Varanasi
  • Patrick Paul D’Souza (see above May 14, 1971 – February 24, 2007), Vice-President of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of India (1996 – 1998)
  • Raphy Manjaly (February 24, 2007 – 2013.10.17), later Bishop of Allahabad (India, in the same province) (2013.10.17 – ...)
  • Eugene Joseph (2015.05.30 – ...)

Sources and External Links[edit]

Coordinates: 25°19′52″N 82°59′03″E / 25.3312°N 82.9842°E / 25.3312; 82.9842