In a solemn liturgical function Rt. Rev. Dr. James Raphael Anaparambil assumed charge over the governance of the diocese of Alleppey as its fourth Bishop on 11th October, 2019. Pope Francis has chosen him to the august position on December 7, 2017 and Bishop James received episcopal ordination on February 11, 2018. Till then he has been serving the Kerala Church in his various capacities such as member of the special team entrusted with the revision of the Malayalam Old Testament Bible, Vicar General of the diocese of Alleppey, the Rector of Pontifical Seminary Carmelgiri, Aluva, President of the Pontifical Institute Aluva, Professor of Pontifical Seminary Carmelgiri, Aluva, member of various national and international bodies like theological Association of India, Association of Biblical Scholars etc.
He was ordained priest on December 17, 1986 by Bishop Peter Chenaparambil. He began his priestly ministry at Thumpoly and Cathedral as the assistant parish priest. Soon after he served the diocese in various capacities such as the prefect of Sacred Heart Seminary Maithara, Assistant Manager of St. Michael’s College Cherthala, Director of teachers’ guild and KCSL and Vocation promoter. During the period from 1993 to 1999 he had his higher studies in Rome at the Urbania University in Biblical theology. Later he also had his post-doctoral Studies in Rome on Jewish culture
He was born on March 7, 1962 as the fifth child of Anaparambil Raphael and Brigit . His home parish is St. Francis Xavier Parish Kandakadavu in Ernakulam district. He had his preliminary studies at St. Mary’s HS Chellanam, minor seminary studies in Alappuzha and major seminary studies at St. Joseph Pontifical Seminary,Aluva.
“I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.” - This great promise of God through Prophet Jeremiah (3,15) has been fulfilled in our midst in the Person of Bishop James Anaparambil. He is called up on to carry forward the legacy of three former bishops. The legacy of nurturing the diocese in its infancy by bishop Michael Arattukulam, the legacy of building up the community of the diocese by bishop Peter Chenaparmbil and the legacy of giving utterance to the predicaments of the coastal people by bishop Stephen Athipozhiyil . May the Lord help bishop James to build the diocese of Alleppey carrying forward the relevant features of the legacies of his predecessors who have been trailblazers in leading the diocese as God’s shepherds. As Pope Francis has relieved the incumbent Bishop Rt. Rev. Dr. Stephen Athipozhiyil from his charge over the diocese may the Lord Jesus continue to protect and keep Bishop Stephen in His abundant peace and love.