In 1836 Pope Gregory XIV made Madurai into an Apostolic Prefecture, in 1846 it was raised to an Apostolic Vicariate and entrusted to the Fathers of Society of Jesus, On Sept. 1, 1886 the Vicariate became a Diocese with the episcopal residence fixed at Tiruchirapalli with Msgr, Alexis Canoz S.J. (1846-1888) as its first Bishop and the territory was called the Diocese of Tiruchirapalli.

In 1923 Pope Pius XI separated the South Eastern part of the diocese known as the fishery coast and made it into a separate Diocese of Tuticorin. In 1938 again the South Western portion was divided and made into the Archdiocese of Madurai by the bull “Si inter infideles.” In 2003 December Pope John Paul II bifurcated the Vicariate of Dindigul from the diocese of Tiruchirapalli and made it into a new diocese of Dindigul.

The present Diocese of Tiruchirapalli comprises of Tiruchy and Manaparai taluks of Tiruchirapalli District, Kulithalai taluk of Karur District, and Kulathur taluk of Pudukottai District. The Diocese consists of 67 parishes grouped into four Vicariates, of Tiruchirapalli-1, Tiruchirapalli-2, Manaparai, and Keeranur.

Former Prelates:

Alexis Canoz Alexis Canoz (1846-1888)
John Barthe S.J John Barthe S.J. (1890-1913)
Augustine Faisandier S.J Augustine Faisandier S.J. (1914-1935)
John Peter Leonard S.J John Peter Leonard S.J. (1936 transferred to Madurai – 1938)
James Mendonca James Mendonca (1938-1971)
Thomas Fernando Thomas Fernando (1971 – retired in 1990)
S. L. Gabriel S. L. Gabriel (1990 – retired in 1997)
Bishop Peter Fernando Bishop Peter Fernando (Administrator 1997-2000)
Bishop Antony Devotta Bishop Antony Devotta installed Bishop of the See of Tiruchirapalli
on 28-01-2001