Pope Francis appointed two bishops for India on June 29 on the occasion of the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul.
Father Visuvasam Selvaraj, 55, has been named new bishop of Port Blair while Father Savarimuthu Arokiaraj, 66, has been appointed prelate of Tiruchirappalli.
Father Selvaraj was born on Jan. 4, 1966, in Raja Anna Malaipuram, in the Archdiocese of Madras-Mylapore.
He attended the Diocesan Minor Seminary in Santhome, Madras (1981-1985) and later studied Philosophy at the Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Poonamallee, Chennai (1985-1988).
He took up Theology at St. Albert’s College, Ranchi (1990-1994). He obtained a Master degree in Canon Law from St. Peter’s Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore (2001).
He was ordained priest on May 8, 1994, for the Diocese of Port Blair. He served in the following Ministries:
- Asst. Parish Priest of the Cathedral, Port Blair (1994-1995)
- Diocesan Consultor (1994-1998)
- Diocesan Procurator (1995-1998)
- Asst. Parish Priest at Mayabunder (1998-1999)
- Director of Social Service, Procurator, In-charge of Projects; in-charge of Formation
Father Arokiaraj, meanwhile, was born on Oct. 24, 1954 in Lalapettai, Diocese of Tiruchirappalli.
He studied Philosophy and Theology at St. Peter’s Pontifical Seminary, Bangalore (1973-1980).
He was ordained priest on Jan. 8, 1981, for the Diocese of Tiruchirappalli. He obtained a Doctorate in Liturgy from the Institute Catholique de Paris, France (2002).
He served in the following ministries:
- Asst. Parish Priest, St. Joseph’s Church, Dindigul (1981)
- Parish Priest at Ayyampatty (1981-1986)
- Parish Priest at P. Udayapatty (1986-1987)
- Secretary of the Diocesan Liturgy Commission (1988-1991)
- Regional Secretary for the Liturgy Commission of Tamil Nadu Bishops’ Council (1991-1994)
After his studies in France, he was appointed Secretary of the Liturgy Commission of Tamil Nadu Bishops’ Council (2002-2008); Diocesan Chancellor and Parish Priest at Subramaniapuram (2009-2012); Diocesan Chancellor and Professor of Liturgy at St. Paul’s Seminary, Tiruchirappalli (2012-2015); Parish Priest of the Cathedral, Tiruchirappalli (2015-2016); Rector of St. Paul’s Seminary, Tiruchirappalli (2016-2019). Since 2019, he is Rector and Parish Priest of Holy Redeemer’s Basilica, Tiruchirappalli. - Frank Krishner / RVA News