SHORT HISTORY OF THE PARISH OF ST DOMINIC, VASANT VIHAR

SHORT HISTORY OF THE PARISH OF ST DOMINIC, VASANT VIHAR

In the year 1976, the Late Archbishop Angelo Fernandes invited the Dominicans (Order of Preachers) to look after the newly created parish of St Dominic at Vasant Vihar in the Archdiocese of Delhi. Also, the initial commission was to provide for the spiritual and intellectual needs of the community at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), one of the top academic institutions in the country. The first Dominicans to be appointed to this mission were fr. Thomas Ryan, OP and fr. Paul Mondoth, OP.

After a considerable time, the appointment of fr. Jerome Toner OP, an Irish Dominican, as the first parish priest took place. Together with the young fr. Paul Mondoth OP, they moved to a two-roomed flat, no. E- 10/09 in Vasant Vihar on Tuesday, 12th July, 1977. The garage of the same bunglow was used as a chapel which was blessed on the 8th of August, 1977, the feast of St Dominic de Guzman, the founder of the Order of Preachers and the Patron of the parish. Two years later, they moved to a more decent location at ‘B’ Block, the fondly remembered B 8/25, which became the centre for all parish activities for the next few years.

It was during this time that the search for an appropriate plot of land for the construction of the parish church began. After months of diligent and agonizing effort and sincere prayers by the faithful, the present plot A-1 on Poorvi Marg was approved by the Delhi Development Authority in 1979. It was an ideal place for a church building, close to the main road, and at the same time within the confines of a residential complex.

The foundation stone was laid in 1980 and construction commenced immediately under the able supervision of fr. Paul Mondoth OP and fr. Amirtharaj OP. After the completion of the construction, the Church was blessed by His Grace Angelo Fernandes, Archbishop of Delhi.

Since then the parish has witnessed a lot of developments. The number of people attending Masses on Sundays and week-days have increased considerably. Now we have five Masses on Sundays and two Masses daily. Various other activities are also conducted during the year to enhance devotion and participation. The church of St Dominic is credited for its friendly atmosphere. That has also been the attitude that was inherited from St Dominic, the founder of the Order Preachers, the Dominicans.

Here is a List of parish priests who served the Parish since the beginning:

1.1977 - 1979fr. Jerome Toner, OP
2.1979 - 1986 fr. Paul Mondoth, OP
3.1986 - 1988 fr. Joe Lawrence, OP
4.1988 - 1990 fr. Sebastian C.J, OP
5.1990 - 1996 fr. Joe Francis, OP
6.1996 - 1997 fr. Jesuraj, OP
7.1997 - 1999 fr. Joseph K.C. OP
8.1999 - 2002 fr. Francis Arackal, OP
9.2002 - 2006 fr. Paul Mondoth, OP
10.2006 - 2012 fr. Amirthra, OP
11.2012 - 2012 fr. John Kusumalayam, OP
12.2012 - 2015 fr. Cyprian Creado, OP
13.2015 fr. Prasad George, OP