The Jesuit Mission History of Madhya Pradesh Province

hhotanagpur along with Jashpur and Gangpur was part of the West Bengal Jesuit Mission. In the course of time Fr. Constant Lievens, S.J. ‘the apostle of Chhotanagpur’ founded the Jesuit Mission in Chhotanagpur. Inspired by the zealous fruitful mission of Lievans many Jesuit missionaries spread all over and Jashpur-Surguja Jesuit mission was part of the great Chhotanagpur Tribal Mission. There is an immense desire in the Jesuits to serve God by serving people especially the poor and the deprived. It was such desire that impelled Fr. De Gryse, S.J. to seek permission from the King of Jashpur to do something for the development of the tribals. He was the first one to enter the Kingdom of Jashpur in the Eastern part of Madhya Pradesh on April 2, 1905. He and his fellow Jesuits initiated the work of development by education, health care and restoring the land property to tribals, which were unduly snatched by non-tribals. The sustained work of Jesuits over hundred years has borne fruits in terms of tribal education, health care, socio-cultural and socio-economic development in the Eastern part of Madhya Pradesh (now Chhattisgarh since 2000). The Jesuits are continuing the work begun by Belgian Jesuit missionaries and venturing into new geographical area with other tribal groups and Dalits to help them to make their life better.