The Diocese of Medak, before its transformation into the present form after 1947, was run by various mission agencies such as Wesleyan Methodist mission, Society for the Propagation of Gospel, Church Missionary Society and Chaplaincies of Church of England. The Church of England had established its chaplaincies at the St. John the Baptist church, Secunderabad (around 200 years old congregation), St. George’s Church, Hyderabad, Holy Trinity Church, Bolaram, Secunderabad, and All Saints Church, Trimulgherry, for the Royal British Officers. Methodist chaplaincy of the Royal British soldiers is stationed at Wesley Garrison Church, Trimulgherry. Ministry for most of the years only continued as chaplaincy services for the soldiers. The Wesleyan Methodist missionaries arrived in the year 1878 and started its mission in the Nizam dominion. It started to spread widely among the country of Nizam. A congregation was set up already in Secunderabad by the church of Scotland and later handed to Wesleyan Missionaries.
Sir Arthur Cotton, a British engineer surveyed from Rajahmundry to Sironcha (presently in Maharashtra) for the construction of a huge dam to store the waters of River Godavari. While his survey he came across the country that seems to be very backward and inhibited with primitive tribes. He shared his observations with Rev. Ebenezer Evans Jenkins and Rev. George Fryar. These two missionaries travelled with the help of the engineer and arrived in Sironcha in the year 1863. After the survey they went back and reported to the Madras synod.
Meanwhile Rev. E. E. Jenkins went back to England, but his heart was longing for mission and ministry in this country. A special fund 500 pounds was raised during the Methodist golden club celebrations in the England. Rev. E. E. Jenkins then the secretary of the Methodist Missionary Society in England, with his recommendations and appeal the synod has sent two missionaries Rev. William Burgess and Rev. Henry Little. It is the divine providence and the guidance of Holy Spirit for the seeds of gospel to be sown in this land. Rev. E. L. Anantha Rao remembers the desire of Rev. E. E. Jenkins, “To the Banks of the Godavari” this vibrant slogan marked the establishment of the Diocese of Medak to take the good news of Jesus Christ to the poor, illiterate, marginalized and downtrodden people living on the banks of the river Godavari.
Burgess is the pioneering missionary in this land. He is eloquent in Tamil and doing good job at madras. By the guidance of Holy Spirit Tamil and Telugu congregations started to meet in the Wesley hall in the market street in Secunderabad. Burgess travelled on the horse back on several miles in the Telangana region just like the Rev. John Wesley who passionately travelled in the English country Burgess traveled to share the good news of Christ.
Rev. Henry Little had also arrived Secunderabad in the year 1878. The Madras synod had sent Mr. Benjamin P. Wesley, the first Indian colleague to assist Rev. Burgess. Later on Benjamin P. Wesley is ordained to part take in this great missionary enterprise. The first Telugu Methodist service was conducted in Boggulakunta, Ramkote on 11th of August 1879 in the house of Mr. Joseph Cornelius. The worshippers at sultan bazaar area started to grow and the first church was built at Chaderghat in Hyderabad in 1880.
Mrs. Burgess has a great vision in empowering the downtrodden and the marginalized communities. He was instrumental in setting up schools and boarding homes in the Secunderabad district, especially for the girls. Mr. Burgess once went to England and to bring a bell for the Wesley church Secunderabad. But she was sadly killed in s ship wreck. So many missionaries have sacrificed their life for the church to grow in this land.
Rev. Benjamin Pratt worked in Secunderabad and later on moved to Karimnagar, made it as his headquarters and set up several congregations in and around the Karimnagar. Several rural congregations were set up due his fervour for gospel. Rev. Benjamin P. Wesley went to Siddipet area and established congregation and continued his missionary work in the area. The prominent missionaries who came later on were Rev. F. Lamb and Rev. F. C. Sackett. Due to their consistent work and zeal for the Christ many came forward and accepted Christ. Mass movements had taken place during this time. The so-called outcastes are welcomed into church in great numbers. The message and love of God reached to the uncared and neglected communities of the society. Medical hospitals were built at Dudgoan, Karimnagar, Medak and a leprosy hospital at Dichipally to meet the needs of the suffering communities.
A great man followed these missionaries was Rev. Charles Walker Posnett of Runcorn. He came to work with soldier at Garrison at Secunderabad and later on moved to to Mmedak. While he went to Medak there was a small congregation and a church hall built in primitive style. The vision of Posnett made to win several town and villages for Christ. He was awarded with the Title Kaiser-I-Hind the highest civilian honour given by the British Government.
The scheme of posnett work was:
The magnificent Medak cathedral was built by Posnett during the famine. The reason behind the construction of the church was primarily to save the people from famine by providing work and shelter. It is also the dream of Posnett to build a large church for the Lord. Hundreds of people worked for the church and built a magnificent church over ten years of time. The slogan of Posnett was “my best for my Lord”. The native people got food to eat during the severe famine. People used to say that they got food, methukulu boiled grains of rice. From methukulu the place named after Methukuseema and later became Medak. The local people perceived that this church has some power that cares and protects them in disastrous times. Soon the place became pilgrim centre and everyday people from various walks of life visit the cathedral. The cathedral is 100 ft (30 m) wide and 200 ft (61 m) long and conforms to the Gothic Revival style. It can accommodate about 5,000 people at a time. The mosaic tiles were imported from Britain and are of six different colours. Italian masons from Mumbai were engaged for laying the decorative flooring. The bell-tower is 175 ft (53 m) high. The biggest attraction of the Cathedral is its stained glass windows depicting different scenes from Christ’s life – Ascension behind the altar, Nativity in the west transept, and Crucifixion in the east transept. The windows were designed by Sir. O. Salisbury of England.
The first bishop of Diocese is Rt. Rev. Frank Whittaker and the present bishop The Rt. Rev. Dr. A. C. Solomon Raj. There are 110 pastorates spread over 13 revenue districts of Telangana state. There are 230 ordained ministers and 100 evangelists and bible women involved in the ministry of the church. Several staff are involved in educational, medical and day care ministries of the Church.
H.No:10-3-165, CSI Diocesan Office,
Old Lancer Lane,
Presbyter-in-charge, CSI Wesley Church, Ramkote, Tilak Road,
H.No: 10-3-165, Golden Jubilee Bhavan, Old Lancer Lane,
H. No: 10-3-165, CSI Diocesan Office, Old Lancer Lane, Secunderabad-500025,
H. No: 4-1-473, Beside Srinivasa Talkies, Shakkarnagar Chourasta,
Nizamabad Dist - 503180,
CSI & Bishop-in-charge Medak
10-3-165, Church House,
Golden Jubilee Bhavan,
Old Lancer Line,
Secunderabad - 500025,