On March 03, 1931, the Mission territory of Indore was formed by extracting some territories from the Diocese of Ajmer, Allahabad and Nagpur and was officially assigned to the Society of the Divine Word. The territory covered 1,10,000 sq. kms. comprising the districts of Indore, Khargone, Dhar, Jhabua (except the Tehsil of Thandla), Ratlam, Ujjain, Dewas, Shajapur, Rajgarh, Bhilsa, Vidisha, the whole of Bhopal State and the districts of Khandwa and Hoshangabad. The first Divine Word Priests, Fr. Peter Janser who was appointed superior of the Mission, and Fr. Leo Krezeminski arrived in Indore on November 04, 1932.
By the Decree “Salutis Animarum” of the S.C. de Prop. Fide, dated March 11, 1935, the Indore Mission was elevated to a Prefecture Apostolic and Msgr. Peter Janser SVD was appointed the first Prefect Apostolic. Under his direction the Mission made considerable progress. In 1952 Indore was raised to a Diocese and Fr. Francis Simons SVD was appointed the first Bishop of Indore.
By the decree “Quae Christianum” the diocese of Indore was erected on May 15, 1952. Msgr. Francis Simons, SVD was appointed as its first Bishop. Bishop Francis Simons, as soon as he became the Bishop of Indore, took over missionary and pastoral care of the vast mission area. During his tenure he established many new centres. With his foresight he purchased land in many places, especially in cities, like Bhopal, Ujjain, Dewas, Hoshangabad, which later became centers of major missions in the region.
Four districts of Bhopal, Hoshangabad, Raisen and Sehore were ceded to the newly formed Archdiocese of Bhopal in 1964. The districts of Ujjain, Shajapur and Ragarh were separated from the Diocese of Indore and the Exarchate (later Diocese) of Ujjain was established in 1968.
The two civil districts of Khandwa and Khargone were separated from Indore Diocese and the Diocese of Khandwa was erected on February 03, 1977.
By the Decree of the Sacred Congregation for Evangelization of peoples, dated March 11, 1981, the district of Mandsaur was transferred from the jurisdiction of the Diocese of Ajmer to that of the Diocese of Indore.
By the decree of His Holiness Pope John Paul II “Ad perpetuam rei memoriam” dated 1st March 2002, the diocese of Jhabua was erected separating the districts of Jhabua, Ratlam, Mandsaur, Neemuch and the Tahshil of Sardarpur from Dhar district from the diocese of Indore. The canonical possession of the new diocese took place on 7th June 2002. After this division, the diocese of Indore has three civil districts of Indore, Dewas and Dhar except the Tahshil of Sardarpur.
The diocesan territory covers a land area of 19,073 Sq. Km with a population of 44,96,287 according to Census of India 2001. The Catholic population of the diocese as on December 2008 is 19,319.