The Eparchy of Kothamangalam was erected by Pope Pius XII through the Papal Bull 'Qui in beati Petri Cathedra' of July 29, 1956 separating the protopresbyterates - Arakuzha, Kothamangalam and Mailacombu- of the then Archeparchy of Ernakulam- Angamaly. Mar Mathew Pothanamuzhi was ordained as the first bishop of the eparchy in Rome on November 18, 1956. The inauguration of the eparchy and the installation of the new bishop took place on January 10, 1957. Mar Mathew Pothanamuzhi retired after two decades of memorable ministry and was succeeded by His Excellency Mar George Punnakottil who took the canonical possession of office on April 24, 1977. The developmental programs in the eparchy got new vigour and verve and there were new initiatives to augment this process. At present the Eparchy is constituted of 107 parishes and 12 filial Churches with altogether 206000 faithful belonging to the Syro-Malabar Church. The total Catholic population including the faithful of Syro-Malankara and Latin Churches comes about 223600.