GCIC Condoles Death of First Dalit Archbishop Marampudi Joji, of Hyderabad

Most Rev. Marampudi Joji, the Archbishop of Hyderabad, passed to Glory at 8.30pm on 27th August.He was a champion for the cause of Dalit Christians..As Chairperson, CBCI Commission for SC/ST/BC! he challenged the constitutional validity of paragraph 3 of the 1950 order. .

Abp Joji, was a staunch defended the Constitutional Rights of Christians enshrined in Art. 25 freedom to profess and practice any religion) of the Constitution of India.Arch Bishop always extented his whole hearted support for the cause of the persecuted for their faith in Christ and was of great strength and inspiration for the struggles carried out by GCIC
Most Rev. Marampudi Joji, also championed the cause of schemes for minorities with the State Authorities
The funeral service will be conducted in the Cathedral at Vijayawada on Monday August 30, 2010, at 03.00 p.m. His mortal remains will be laid to rest, as he wrote in his Last Will: at St. Josephs Cemetery, Gunadala, next to the tomb of my Late Bishop Joseph Thumma & I loved him and prepared my grave beside him.GCIC Prays For Eternal Peace and Joy With the Resurrected Christ in Heaven

Archbishop Marampudi Joji was born at Bhimavaram town (which falls at present in the ecclesiastical territory of Eluru) on October 7th, 1942 to late Mr. Joseph and Mrs. Manikyamma. He is the fourth son of 6-member family. He had his primary and high school education at his hometown. He had his Minor Seminary studies at Nuzvid. He did his studies in Philosophy and Theology at Hyderabad and Bangalore. Late Bishop Joseph Thumma of Vijayawada ordained him priest at Gunadala, (Vijayawada) on December 14th, 1971. He is one of the first local Telugu priests of the Diocese of Vijayawada.

He holds diplomas in Catechetics, Journalism, Advertising and Public Relations from Loyola Institute of Communication and Arts. He obtained a diploma in Business Administration from the School of Public Administration. He holds another diploma in Accountancy from Bombay University. For sometime he worked as a part-time journalist at Indian Express Office, (daily English News Paper) Vijayawada.

In 1992, the Roman Pontiff appointed him Bishop of Khammam and he was consecrated Bishop at Gunadala (Vijayawada) by Archbishop George Zur, Apostolic Nuncio to India, on 19th March, 1992. Bishop Joji worked for four and a half years in the Diocese of Khammam, and build up the new Diocese.

On 18th December, 1996 Pope John Paul II appointed him Bishop of Vijayawada. He took charge of the Diocese of Vijayawada on 19th January, 1997. He was the fourth Bishop of Vijayawada, succeeding Bishop Joseph Thumma. His appointment to the Diocese of Vijayawada has begun a new era in the history of the Diocese of Vijayawada. Right from the beginning, he has set new thrusts for the activity and apostolates of the Diocese. Faithful to the visions of the former Prelates, he has ably been leading the Diocese into the third millennium. On 17th March 2000 he was transferred from Vijayawada and appointed the Archbishop of Hyderabad.