Father James Thomas was born in Kerala, India, near the town of Pala the sixth of seven children born to Rose and Bernard Thomas. Upon completing secondary school, he joined the Congregation of the Mission and was ordained to the priesthood on December 27, 1991.


Father has served in several missions : with an indigenous tribe in Odisha, India;  in the state of Andhra Pradesh in India; in the Diocese of Mbinga in Tanzania; and in Tunisia before coming to Canada. At the request of his congregation, he undertook doctoral studies in Rome on Pauline writing. He has served for the past six years as an instructor of the missionary students of his Congregation and has also taught Biblical theology and Hebrew at the Pontifical Athaneum from 2014-2018.