First Doctor in Sacred Scripture from Karnataka
The entire Karnataka-Goa Province rejoices at the
news of its first Doctor in Sacred Scripture in the
person of Fr. Richard Francis D’Souza, OCD. Fr.
Richard defended his thesis titled, “Yes Lord, I
have Believed”, Martha’s Confession of Faith in the
Fourth Gospel, A Narrative Critical Analysis, on
Tuesday 30th June in Rome. It was an online defense
which lasted for about two hours and was live
streamed in YouTube starting at 7.30 p.m. Indian
Fr. Richard is the son of Mr. & Mrs. Maurice D’Souza
and Elize D’Souza and hails from Our Lady of Pompei
Church, Gurpur, Mangalore. He did his primary
schooling at Our Lady of Pompei Church School. After
completing his SSLC at Rosa Mystica High School in
1992, he joined the Order of the Discalced
Carmelites of the Karnataka-Goa Province. He pursued
his Philosophy in Mysore and graduated in Commerce
securing the first rank and a gold medal. Later he
completed his Theology at St. Peter’s Pontifical
Seminary, Bangalore. He was ordained priest on 28th
December 2004. After his ordination, while serving
six months at the Carmelite mission in Hadagali, he
was appointed as the director of the minor seminary
in Koteshwar, Kundapur for three years. Meantime, he
also completed his MBA in Human Resource Management
at the KSOU, Mysore. Thereafter, for three years he
rendered his services as the secretary to the
Provincial Superior in Bangalore. Meantime he also a
visiting professor at “Pushpashrama”, the college of
Philosophy and Religion, Mysore.
In 2011, Fr. Richard travelled to Italy for his
higher studies in Rome. In October, the same year he
began his Licentiate in Sacred Scripture at the
prestigious Pontifical Biblical Institute, Rome.
Having completed his Licentiate in record time
(December 2014), he registered himself for the
Doctoral programme at the said university in 2015.
In February 2016 he successfully cleared his
free-doctoral defense (Lectio Coram). From October
that year Fr. Richard began his doctoral research
under the guidance of Prof. Luca Pedroli and
submitted the completed thesis for the defense in
While working on his research paper, Fr. Richard was
also teaching at the Pontifical Spirituality and
Theology Institute, “Teresianum”, Rome. At present
he is a fulltime professor of Sacred Scripture at
the said Institute. During his visits to India, Fr.
Richard also teaches Scripture at the Carmelite
Spirituality Institutes such as “Ryshivana” in
Mangalore and “Dhyanavana” in Mysore. In summer, he
holds biblical conferences to the Cloistered Carmel
sisters in Italy and to the Parishioners of St.
Gregory the Great Church, Harrison, New York.
The Discalced Carmelites, together with all his
friends, congratulates Fr. Richard Francis D’Souza
on being the first Doctor in Sacred Scripture and
wish him all the very best for his teaching ministry
as the professor at the Teresianum, Rome.