Diocese of Hakha

Diocese of Hakha

 

HIS EXCELLENCY BISHOP LUCIUS HRE KUNG (D.D.)

BISHOP OF HAKHA DIOCESE

 

Date of Birth                                      24.02.1959

Ordained priest                                 23.02.1989

Ordained Bishop                              02.02.2014

Appointed as Bishop of Hakha     19.10.2014

Tel: Bishop’s Office                         070-22350

E-mail:                                                fl.kung8@gmail.com

 

SECRETARIAT

 

            Address                                 Bishop’s House,

                                                            Zethit Qtr., Hakha

                                                            Chin State, Myanmar

            Tel.                                          0095/ (0) 92450483

            Reception                              070-22348/ 22349

 

 

DIOCESAN CURIA MEMBERS

 

 

Ex. Officio members:

 

            Vicar General                       Msgr. Jerome Hlawn Khawl

            Chancellor                            Fr. Lucas Tha Ling Sum

            Notary                                                Fr. Nicholas Le Thang

            Procurator                             Fr. Emmnuel Hrang Za Uk

            Address                                 Bishop’s Residence

                                                            No. 1193, Zethit Qtr.,

Hakha, Chin State

 

1.  Vicars Forane

 

            Vicar Forance of Hakha                 Fr. John Om Se

            Vicar Forane of Mindat                   Fr. Joseph Se Thang

            Vicar Forance of Falam                  Fr. Francis Lan Sawn

            Vicar Forance of Rezua                 Fr. Lucas Khia Mang

            Vicar Forance of Chaungkhuah   Fr.Thomas Ngun Za Thuan

            Vicar Forance of Lukse                  Fr. Joseph Phe Ling Lay

            Vicar Forance of Matupi                 Fr. Joseph Se Yom

            Vicar Forance of Kiunglong          Fr. Lawrence Maung Ling

 

2. COLLEGE OF CONSULTORS

 

            Msgr. Jerome Hlawn Khawl                                              

            Fr. John Om Se

            Fr. Lucas Tha Ling Sum                

            Fr. Francis Lan Sawn                    

            Fr. Lucas Khia Mang                      

            Fr. Peter Ki Se                     

            Fr. Joseph Ki Khui Om

            Fr. John Paul Mang Sein Yaw

            Fr. Dominic Kung Teal

            Fr. Emmanual Hrang Za Uk          

 

3. DIOCESAN FINANCIAL COUNCIL    

 

            Bishop Lucius Hre Kung                (President)

            Fr. David Khin Hmung                    (Secretary)

            Fr. Paul Thla Kio

            Fr. John Om Se

            Fr. Francis Lan Sawn

            Fr. Lucas Khia Mang

            Fr. John Paul Mang Sein Yaw

            Fr. Michal Zung Cung

            Mr. Robert Hram Ceu

            Daw Emily

 

4. DIOCESAN COUNCIL OF PRIESTS

 

            Msgr. Jerome Hlawn Khawl           Fr. Lucas Tha Ling Sum                            

Fr. Emmanuel Hrang Za Uk           Fr. John Om Se               

            Fr. Francis Lan Sawn                     Fr. Lucas Khai Mang          

            Fr. Peter Ki Se                                  Fr. Dominic Kung Teal       

            Fr. Joseph Ki Khui Om                   Fr. Joseph Se Yom             

            Fr. Michael Zung Cung                  Fr. David Khin Hmung       

            Fr. Paul Kip Thawng                       Fr. Pius Kei Lian Cung      

            Fr. Nicholas Le Thang

 

Commissions and Services

 

            Liturgy                                                Fr. Nicholas Le Thang

            Karuna                                               Fr. Joseph Ro Nei Thang (KHSS)

            Laity, Family and AsIPA                 Fr. Lucas Khia Mang

            Youth                                                             Fr. John Om Ling Ghung

            Signis                                                 Fr. David Khin Hmung

                                                                        Fr. Paul Kip Thawng

            PMS and Tithe                                 Fr. Emmanuel Hrang Za Uk

            Sprituality of L.W.M.T and

            L.W.S.T                                              Fr. Pius Kei Lian Cung

            E.V, Catechesis, Catechists          Fr. Lucas Tha Ling Sum

            L.W.M.T                                              Fr. Joseph Ki Khui Om

            Translation                                        Fr. Sebastian Khaw Gei Ghung

                                                                        Fr. David Khin Hmung

                                                                        Fr. Michael Awi Cung

 

            Priestly formation and

            Clergy Commission                         Fr. John Om Se

            Migration and displaced

            People                                               Fr. Jerome Hlawn Khawl

                                                                        Fr. Timothy Khui Shing Ling

            Education                                          Fr. Andrew Le Tling

            Ecumenism                                       Fr. Andrew Biak Lian Uk

            Culture                                               Fr. Jacob Ling Ha Ling

            Justice and Peace                           Fr. Joseph Se Yom

            Agriculture and

            Food Security                                   Fr. Thomas Ngun Za Thuan and                                                                                                  Fr. Nicholas Ghung Thang Se

            Social Development                                    Fr. Emmanuel Hrang Za Uk

                                                                        Fr. Sebastian Khaw Gei   Ghung

                                                                        Fr. Peter Ki Se

Biblical Apostolate, AsIPA & BEC                        His Excellency, Lucius Hre Kung

Theological Concern                                  1. Fr. Lucas Tha Ling Sum

                                                                        2. Fr. Timothy Khui Shing Ling



Brief History
 
The blue mountains in the Western side of the Chindwin river were always on the mind of the French Priests of the “Paris Foreign Mission Society” (Missions Etrangeres De Paris). They were known for their missionary zeal and holiness. They attempted to enter the Chin Hills even in 1864. In that year Bishop Bigandet sent Fr. Lecomte (MEP), but his mission to reach the Chin Hills was not successful since his movement was restricted. The King’s soldiers escorted him and did not allow him to go beyond the catholic villages.
 
Twenty years later in 1884, Fr. Laurent (MEP), who worked some years among the Kachins previously, came to Kalaymyo. There he met some Chins. He found that the Chins did not speak much Burmese but they were kind and simple. In 1888, Fr. Antonin Usse came up to Kindat near Mawlaik from Chaung Oo by English steamer. Relating his experience, he wrote to Bishop Simon of Mandalay: “Farther in the west are the Chins, a people of straight forward and brave warriors, who are defending their independence against the ambition of the English, I would be proud to be their apostle”. He came back to visit the Catholics in the English military camps. This time, on September 22, 1889, he reached Forth White near Thuklai. As he looked down from there, he saw the nearby villages abandoned by the villagers who hid themselves in the jungle due to the war with the British soldiers. In this letter to the Bishop dated October 15, 1889, he said “Once I climbed up to the top of the mountain and contemplated the villages far away. How I wished to go there with my crucifix and my breviary... it would be useless to go now. The country will open itself. Some day it would be necessary to send a caravan of missionaries in that part of the Vineyard. They might die even there, victims of their zeal”. He was the first Catholic priest to visit Northern Chin State.
 
In 1890, the Vicar Apostolic of Mandalay, Msgr. Simon, sent one of his best priests, Fr. Laurent (MEP), and Fr. Vestraeten to Chin hills, 250 miles away. They went towards Northern Chin hills and settled at Balet, south of Mawlaik, on the western side of the Chindwin River. But after one year, they saw that they were still far from the real Chins.
 
The next year, Fr. Laurent went with Fr. Jarre to enter Chin hills in the south from Pakokku, through Pauk and Thilin. They arrived to the large village of Shon-Shi, near the Myittha river. Although it was at the foot of the hills, they had met with real Chins, and they began to study the language.
 
At the end of 1891, after the retreat, a third missionary, Fr. Accarion, joined them. With the complicity of Chin traders who had come down to the plains, they made the project of climbing to Hakha to settle there, in the centre of Chin Hills. Fr. Laurent remained at Gangaw, for health reasons. But as soon as Frs. Jarre and Accarion arrived to Hakha, the capital of Chin State, an English officer, who was a protestant and hostile to the Catholics, obliged them to leave the place and to go back down to the plains saying that Chins were not yet civilized and the life of the priests would be in danger. The Fathers had no choice but to go back to Gangaw. In 1898, the American Baptist missionaries came to Hakha. The same officer who refused to give permission to Catholic missionaries to work in the Chin hills welcomed them with open arms.
 
The coming of the Baptist Mission was a blessing in disguise for the Catholic Mission. For more than forty years, they invented the written language of Hakha, Falam and Tiddim with Roman alphabets. They translated the New Testament. They abolished the sacrifices to the spirits which is too costly. The Chins opened their eyes to the world. They wanted to become Baptists, but their strict prohibition to drink “Zu” (Traditional Alcoholic Drink) is too demanding for the Chin people. “Zu” is for them a kind of nutrition and also the only consolation for them after a hard day’s work. Many people began to ask for a kind of Christianity that would allow its believers to drink “Zu”. At the same time many wanted to be free from worshipping evil spirits. By any standard, the first attempts of Catholic Missionaries to Chin Hills were not successful.
 
Evangelization of the Southern Chin State
 
The second attempt was made in 1934, under Bishop A. Faliere 50 years later than the Protestants. Bishop A. Faliere, Fr. Audrain (MEP) and Fr. Alexis U Ba Din, a diocesan priest, with four catechists arrived at Kanpetlet, the then capital of Southern Chin State, on the 17th of December 1933. Looking for better prospects, the pioneers proceeded to Mindat, 32 miles northeast of Kanpetlet on the 31st of December 1933. The first Mass was offered on the 1st of January 1934. With the strenuous efforts of two pioneers, Fr. Audrain and Fr. Alexis, the good seed of the Word of God was sown in the Mindat area of Southern Chin State to grow in time into a big tree.
 
Evangelization of the Northern Chin State
 
In 1938, Bishop Faliere came to meet Colonel Burne at Magwe to settle some problems connected with Mindat hospital. Colonel Burne was the highest authority in the Chin Special Division. When they met each other, the
Colonel had just come back from his official visit to the Northern Chin hills. He recommended the Bishop to go and begin a Catholic Mission in the Northern Chin hills. The Bishop was very happy and he himself came to the north in the following year in 1939. While the Bishop and his companions were at the house of Mr. Kelly, the Assistant Superintendent of Tiddim and a Catholic, the Superintendent from Falam came to meet them. He told the Bishop that the coming of the Catholic Mission in the Chin hills was contrary to the agreement signed in 1898 with the Baptist missionaries. He wanted them to draw back as they did to Fr. Jarre and Fr. Accarion. The Bishop smilingly told him that he came there with the permission of the highest authority, Colonel Burne at Magwe.
 
He continued his missionary journey without fear. The American Baptist missionaries did not keep silent. They wrote to the British Governor of Burma reminding him of the agreement made with them in 1898. According to them, the arrival of the Catholic Church in the Chin hills would break that agreement. The Governor kindly thanked them for their good works among the Chins but ended his letter by saying that he did not see any reason to forbid the arrival of the Catholics there. “As in the rest of Burma”, he added, “the simultaneous presence of Baptists and Catholics created an emulation quite beneficial to the population, so would the presence of Catholics alongside the Baptists on the hills be of benefit to all people”. With this the Catholics won a landslide victory. The real beginning of the Catholic Church in the Northern Chin hills started with the arrival at Tonzang of Fr. Mainier, Fr. Blivet, Fr. Aloysius U Ba Khin and four catechists: Maung Tun Yin, Fridolinus Mg Ba Maung, Saya Aung Min, and Mr. Frank Reuben (to Tongzang). Fr. Moses took up his residence at Tongzang, while Fr. Blivet settled at Lailui Village.
The Chin State was under the Archdiocese of Mandalay until Hakha Diocese was established on 21st November, 1992. Bishop Nicholas Mang Thang, ordained as Auxiliary Bishop of Archdiocese of Mandalay on 15th January, 1989, was appointed on 21st November, 1992 and enthroned on 21st March 1993 as the first ever Bishop of Hakha Diocese. Considering a better and more effective mission administration of the diocese, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI raised Msgr. Felix Lian Khen Thang, one of our Chin priests from the same diocese, to the dignity of episcopacy and appointed him as Auxiliary Bishop of Hakha Diocese. His Episcopal Ordination was held on 6th May, 2006. Now he has been appointed Bishop of Kalay Diocese on 22nd May, 2010 and enthroned on 29th June, 2010 at Kalay.
























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