Rt. Rev.Dr. Justin Bernard Gnnapragasam was appointed by the Pope as the 8th Bishopof Jaffna with effect from Yesterday. A declaration to this effect was read out by the retiring Bishop, Rt.Rev.Thomas Saundranayagam at the Bishop’s House Jaffna.
Born in 1948 in Kayts, and Ordained as a priest in1974, the new Bishop had completed 40 years in Apostolic service and concurrent 31 years of Educational service. He served as a Lecturer in the Faculty of Christian Civilization from1982 to 1984. He was a member of University Senate from 1998 – 2014 serving as the Evaluator and Examiner for MA and PhD degrees of the University from 2003 to date.
After his ordination he has served various capacities:
1974-1975: Assistant parish priest of Kilinochchi and Valaipadu?
1975-1976: Assistant parish priest ? of Uruthirapuram;
1976-1979: Assistant parish priest ? in S. Anna, Ilavalai
1979-1980: Studied ecumenical theology at Hull University, UK
1980-1985: Parish priest of Mareesankoodal and vice rector of St. Henry’s College, Jaffna
1986-1989: Studied education science at Southampton, UK
1990-1994: Director of a group of state schools and rector of St. Henry’s College, Jaffna
1995-2002: Dean of the Ilavalai Deanary comprising 9 parishes of Jaffna
1992-2006: Visiting Professor of the major seminary of Jaffna;
2002-2007: Rector of St. Patrick’s College, Jaffna;?
2002: Examiner of doctoral theses, Jaffna University
2007: Vicar Geneeral of Jaffna;
2008: Director of Jaffna press