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Pope names new archbishop of Imphal in northeast India

Pope Francis has appointed Father Linus Neli as Archbishop of Imphal, Manipur, northeast India.

He currently serves as the judicial vicar of the archdiocese.

The Holy Father accepted the resignation of Archbishop Dominic Lumon (75) from the pastoral care of the Archdiocese of Imphal.

Father Neli was born on April 26, 1957, in Imphal. He studied philosophy at Christ the King College in Shillong and theology at the Papal Seminary in Pune, in the southern Indian state of Maharashtra.

He obtained a Doctorate in Canon Law from the Pontifical Urbaniana University of Rome. He was ordained a priest on December 20, 1984, for the Archdiocese of Imphal and Director of the Retreat Centre at Imphal.

The 66-year-old bishop-elect was dean of studies at the Minor Seminary of Imphal (1985–1986) and secretary to the Archbishop of Imphal (1986–1988).

He served as assistant parish priest of the Sacred Heart in Hundung (1988–1989), Chancellor and Judicial Vicar of Imphal (1994–1998), and Principal of the Sacred Heart Institute in Hundung (1998–2004).

He was associate director at St. John's Medical College Hospital in Bangalore (2004–2007); Vicar General of Imphal (2007–2010); parish priest of Mary Help of Christians in Ukhrul (2010–2013); and national director of Caritas India (2013–2014).

He was the rector of Oriens Theological College in Shillong (2014–2017) and the parish priest and principal of the San Pietro Institute in Monsang Pantha (2016–2019).

Since 2019, he has been the director of the Archdiocesan Retreat Center and judicial vicar of the Metropolitan Court of Imphal.

The Archdiocese of Imphal was elevated on July 10, 1995. Currently, it has 54 parishes serving as many as 101,283 Catholics, according to 2022 Vatican data.


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