Diocese of Rome

Diocese of Rome

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The Diocese of Rome is a diocese
Diocese
A diocese is the district or see under the supervision of a bishop. It is divided into parishes.An archdiocese is more significant than a diocese. An archdiocese is presided over by an archbishop whose see may have or had importance due to size or historical significance...

 of the Catholic Church in Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

, Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

. The bishop
Bishop (Catholic Church)
In the Catholic Church, a bishop is an ordained minister who holds the fullness of the sacrament of Holy Orders and is responsible for teaching the Catholic faith and ruling the Church....

 of Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

 is the Pope
Pope
The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

, who is the Supreme Pontiff and leader of the Catholic Church. Established in the 1st century, its current bishop is Pope Benedict XVI
Pope Benedict XVI
Benedict XVI is the 265th and current Pope, by virtue of his office of Bishop of Rome, the Sovereign of the Vatican City State and the leader of the Catholic Church as well as the other 22 sui iuris Eastern Catholic Churches in full communion with the Holy See...

, who acceded after the death of Pope John Paul II
Pope John Paul II
Blessed Pope John Paul II , born Karol Józef Wojtyła , reigned as Pope of the Catholic Church and Sovereign of Vatican City from 16 October 1978 until his death on 2 April 2005, at of age. His was the second-longest documented pontificate, which lasted ; only Pope Pius IX ...

, in April 2005.

Bishop


The bishop
Bishop
A bishop is an ordained or consecrated member of the Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight. Within the Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox Churches, in the Assyrian Church of the East, in the Independent Catholic Churches, and in the...

 of the Diocese of Rome has, first of all, the simple title of Bishop of Rome because all his other titles descend from this position which points to him as the successor of Saint Peter
Saint Peter
Saint Peter or Simon Peter was an early Christian leader, who is featured prominently in the New Testament Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles. The son of John or of Jonah and from the village of Bethsaida in the province of Galilee, his brother Andrew was also an apostle...

 in Rome. From this he has a plethora of titles:
  • Foremost he is the Pope
    Pope
    The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

    (from Latin papa, Greek
    Greek language
    Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

     παππας pappas) meaning "father". His see is the Chair of Peter which has Primacy over all of the Catholic Church and makes its bishop the Supreme Pontiff and Vicar of Christ
    Vicar of Christ
    Vicar of Christ is a term used in different ways, with different theological connotations throughout history...

    .
  • He has also been called Patriarch
    Patriarch
    Originally a patriarch was a man who exercised autocratic authority as a pater familias over an extended family. The system of such rule of families by senior males is called patriarchy. This is a Greek word, a compound of πατριά , "lineage, descent", esp...

     of the West
    , although this title has been dropped recently. He has authority over the entire Latin Church
    Latin Church
    The Latin Church is the largest particular church within the Catholic Church. It is a particular church not on the level of the local particular churches known as dioceses or eparchies, but on the level of autonomous ritual churches, of which there are 23, the remaining 22 of which are Eastern...

    , over the other Latin Patriarchs, such as the Patriarchs of Jerusalem
    Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem
    The Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem is the title possessed by the Latin Rite Catholic Archbishop of Jerusalem. The Archdiocese of Jerusalem has jurisdiction for all Latin Rite Catholics in Israel, the Palestinian Territories, Jordan and Cyprus...

    , Venice
    Patriarch of Venice
    The Patriarch of Venice is the ordinary bishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Venice. The bishop is one of the few Patriarchs in the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church...

     and Lisbon
    Patriarch of Lisbon
    The Patriarch of Lisbon is an honorary title possessed by the archbishop of the Archdiocese of Lisbon.The first patriarch of Lisbon was D. Tomás de Almeida, who was appointed in 1716 by Pope Clement XI...

    . In the Orthodox Church, he was first of the five ancient patriarchs of the Christian Pentarchy
    Pentarchy
    Pentarchy is a term in the history of Christianity for the idea of universal rule over all Christendom by the heads of five major episcopal sees, or patriarchates, of the Roman Empire: Rome, Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem...

    .
  • Then he is Primate
    Primate (religion)
    Primate is a title or rank bestowed on some bishops in certain Christian churches. Depending on the particular tradition, it can denote either jurisdictional authority or ceremonial precedence ....

     of Italy
    , that means the most important bishop of the Italian church.
  • Finally, he is also the Metropolitan Archbishop
    Archbishop
    An archbishop is a bishop of higher rank, but not of higher sacramental order above that of the three orders of deacon, priest , and bishop...

    of the Ecclesiastical Province
    Ecclesiastical Province
    An ecclesiastical province is a large jurisdiction of religious government, so named by analogy with a secular province, existing in certain hierarchical Christian churches, especially in the Catholic Church and Orthodox Churches and in the Anglican Communion...

     of Rome itself.

Origins



The best evidence available for the origins of the Roman church is Saint Paul's Epistle to the Romans
Epistle to the Romans
The Epistle of Paul to the Romans, often shortened to Romans, is the sixth book in the New Testament. Biblical scholars agree that it was composed by the Apostle Paul to explain that Salvation is offered through the Gospel of Jesus Christ...

. This indicates that the church was established probably by the early 40s. Saint Peter
Saint Peter
Saint Peter or Simon Peter was an early Christian leader, who is featured prominently in the New Testament Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles. The son of John or of Jonah and from the village of Bethsaida in the province of Galilee, his brother Andrew was also an apostle...

 became associated with this church sometime between the year 58 and the early 60s.

Says one source:
The final years of the first century and the early years of the second constitute the "postapostolic" period, as reflected in the extrabiblical writings of Clement of Rome and Ignatius of Antioch. By now the church at Rome was exercising a pastoral care that extended beyond its own community, having replaced Jerusalem as the practical center of the growing universal Church. Appeals were made to Peter and Paul, with whom the Roman church was most closely identified.

Diocese



The territory of the diocese extends all over the Vatican City State and the city of Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

, capital of the Italian Republic. The two parts of the diocese are then administrated by two vicars general of the Pope:
  • Vicariate of Rome
    Cardinal Vicar
    Cardinal Vicar is a title commonly given to the vicar general of the diocese of Rome for the portion of the diocese within Italy. The official title, as given in the Annuario Pontificio , is "Vicar General of His Holiness for the Diocese of Rome"...

    , or Vicariatus urbis, includes the cathedral
    Cathedral
    A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

     of Archibasilica Lateranensis
    Basilica of St. John Lateran
    The Papal Archbasilica of St. John Lateran , commonly known as St. John Lateran's Archbasilica and St. John Lateran's Basilica, is the cathedral of the Diocese of Rome and the official ecclesiastical seat of the Bishop of Rome, who is the Pope...

    and all the territory under Italian
    Italy
    Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

     sovereignty. The current vicar general is Agostino Cardinal Vallini
    Agostino Vallini
    Agostino Vallini is an Italian Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He currently serves as Vicar General of Rome, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 2006.-Biography:...

    . Because of the role of the Pope as the head of the Catholic Church, a Cardinal Vicar
    Cardinal Vicar
    Cardinal Vicar is a title commonly given to the vicar general of the diocese of Rome for the portion of the diocese within Italy. The official title, as given in the Annuario Pontificio , is "Vicar General of His Holiness for the Diocese of Rome"...

      appointed by the Pope assists with the spiritual administration of the diocese. As such the Cardinal Vicar functions as a de facto
    De facto
    De facto is a Latin expression that means "concerning fact." In law, it often means "in practice but not necessarily ordained by law" or "in practice or actuality, but not officially established." It is commonly used in contrast to de jure when referring to matters of law, governance, or...

     diocesan bishop due to the Pope
    Pope
    The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

    's many other responsibilities.
  • Vicariate of the Vatican City
    Vicar General for the Vatican City State
    The Vicar General for the Vatican City State or more formally the Vicar General of His Holiness for the State of Vatican City is an appointed position within the Roman Catholic Church, appointed by the Pope...

    includes the Basilica Vaticana and all the territory of the Vatican City State. It consists of two parishes: the parish of the Basilica of Saint Peter and the parish of Saint Anne in Vatican. The current vicar general is Angelo Cardinal Comastri
    Angelo Comastri
    Angelo Comastri is an Italian clergyman of the Roman Catholic Church. He is the current President of the Fabric of Saint Peter, Archpriest of St. Peter's Basilica, and Vicar General for the Vatican City State. He previously served as Bishop of Massa Marittima-Piombino and Territorial Prelate of...

    .


The diocese covers a territory of 881 square kilometers containing 341 parish
Parish
A parish is a territorial unit historically under the pastoral care and clerical jurisdiction of one parish priest, who might be assisted in his pastoral duties by a curate or curates - also priests but not the parish priest - from a more or less central parish church with its associated organization...

es, 337 of which are active. There are 336 for the city of Rome and one, St. Anne's Parish, for Vatican City
Vatican City
Vatican City , or Vatican City State, in Italian officially Stato della Città del Vaticano , which translates literally as State of the City of the Vatican, is a landlocked sovereign city-state whose territory consists of a walled enclave within the city of Rome, Italy. It has an area of...

. The diocese has 238 cardinal
Cardinal (Catholicism)
A cardinal is a senior ecclesiastical official, usually an ordained bishop, and ecclesiastical prince of the Catholic Church. They are collectively known as the College of Cardinals, which as a body elects a new pope. The duties of the cardinals include attending the meetings of the College and...

 clerics, a vicegerent of archepiscopal rank (vacant), six auxiliary bishop
Auxiliary bishop
An auxiliary bishop, in the Roman Catholic Church, is an additional bishop assigned to a diocese because the diocesan bishop is unable to perform his functions, the diocese is so extensive that it requires more than one bishop to administer, or the diocese is attached to a royal or imperial office...

s at present and an additional 1187 "Roman" clerics. In 2004, they pastored an estimated 2,454,000 faithful
Faithful (baptized Catholic)
Faithful is a Roman Catholic term referring to those who:The term comes from the Latin word fideles, from fides, faith....

, who made up 88% of the population of the territory.

In the case of Rome, the city has grown beyond the boundaries of the diocese. Notable parts of Rome belong to the dioceses of Ostia and Porto-Santa Rufina. Ostia is administered together with the Vicariate of the City and thus included in the statistics given above, while Porto is indeed administered by its own residential bishop.

Suburbicarian sees


Six of the dioceses of the Roman Province have the title of suburbicarians, from the Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 sub urbe, with the significance of "subject to the city [of Rome]". Each suburbicarian diocese
Suburbicarian diocese
The seven suburbicarian dioceses are Roman Catholic dioceses located in the vicinity of Rome, whose bishops form the highest-ranking order of Cardinals, the Cardinal Bishops....

 has a Cardinal Bishop at its head.
  • Suburbicarian See of Porto-Santa Rufina
    Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Porto-Santa Rufina
    The Diocese of Porto and Santa-Rufina is a suburbicarian see of the Holy Roman Church and a diocese of the Catholic Church in Italy...

  • Suburbicarian See of Albano
    Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Albano
    The Diocese of Albano is a suburbicarian see of the Roman Catholic Church in a diocese in Italy, comprising seven towns in the Province of Rome...

  • Suburbicarian See of Frascati
    Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Frascati
    The Diocese of Frascati is a suburbicarian see of the Holy Roman Church and a diocese of the Catholic Church in Italy, based at Frascati, near Rome. The bishop of Frascati is a Cardinal Bishop; from the Latin name of the area, the bishop has also been called Bishop of Tusculum. The bishopric in...

  • Suburbicarian See of Palestrina
    Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Palestrina
    thumb|250 px|The Cathedral of Sant'Agapito in Palestrina.The Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Palestrina, , is a Roman Catholic suburbicarian diocese centered on the comune of Palestrina in Italy....

  • Suburbicarian See of Sabina-Poggio Mirteto
    Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Sabina-Poggio Mirteto
    The Diocese of Sabina-Poggio Mirteto a suburbicarian see of the Holy Roman Church and a diocese of the Catholic Church in Italy. Since 1842 the Cardinal Bishop of Sabina also bears the title of Abbot of Farfa...

  • Suburbicarian See of Velletri-Segni
    Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Velletri-Segni
    The Roman Catholic Suburbicarian Diocese of Velletri-Segni is one of the suburbicarian dioceses, Catholic dioceses in Italy close to Rome with a special status and a Cardinal Bishop, the bishop of Velletri-Segni. Historically, the see of Velletri was combined with the see of Ostia from 1105 to...


Diocese of Ostia


There remains the titular Suburicarian See of Ostia
Bishop of Ostia
The Bishop of Ostia is the head of the Suburbicarian Diocese of Ostia, one of the seven suburbicarian sees of Rome. The position is now attached to the post of Dean of the College of Cardinals, as it has been since 1150, with the actual governance of the diocese entrusted to the Vicar General of...

, which is held by the Cardinal Bishop elected to be the Dean of the College of Cardinals
Dean of the College of Cardinals
The Dean of the Sacred College of Cardinals is the president of the College of Cardinals in the Roman Catholic Church, and as such always holds the rank of Cardinal Bishop. The Dean is not necessarily the longest-serving member of the whole College...

, in addition to his previous Suburicarian See. The Diocese of Ostia was merged with the Diocese of Rome in 1914, and is now administered by the Vicar General for Rome.

Suffragan sees


Otherwise there are other dioceses connected with the Metropolitan
Metropolitan bishop
In Christian churches with episcopal polity, the rank of metropolitan bishop, or simply metropolitan, pertains to the diocesan bishop or archbishop of a metropolis; that is, the chief city of a historical Roman province, ecclesiastical province, or regional capital.Before the establishment of...

 of Rome. They are churches
Particular Church
In Catholic canon law, a Particular Church is an ecclesial community headed by a bishop or someone recognised as the equivalent of a bishop.There are two kinds of particular Churches:# Local particular Churches ...

 directly subjected to the Holy See:
  • Archdiocese of Gaeta
  • Diocese of Anagni-Alatri
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Anagni-Alatri
    The Italian Catholic diocese of Anagni, in Lazio, has existed since 1986. In that year the diocese of Alatri was united to the historical diocese of Anagni. The diocese is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Rome.-History:...

  • Diocese of Civita Castellana
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Cività Castellana
    The diocese of Civita Castellana is a Roman Catholic ecclesiastical territory in Latium, central Italy. It has existed in the current form since 1986, when the diocese of Nepi e Sutri was united into the diocese of Civita Castellana, Orte e Gallese, dating from 1805...

  • Diocese of Civitavecchia-Tarquinia
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Civitavecchia-Tarquinia
    The Italian Catholic diocese of Civitavecchia-Tarquinia is in Lazio, and has existed under this name since 1986. The diocese is directly subject to the diocese of Rome.-History:Centumcellæ was the ancient name of Civitavecchia. Catacombs have been found here....

  • Diocese of Frosinone-Veroli-Ferentino
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Frosinone-Veroli-Ferentino
    The Italian Catholic diocese of Frosinone-Veroli-Ferentino has existed since 1986. In that year, the diocese of Ferentino was united into the diocese of Veroli-Frosinone; which was the name of the historic diocese of Veroli from 1956...

  • Diocese of Latina-Terracina-Sezze-Priverno
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Latina-Terracina-Sezze-Priverno
    The Italian Catholic diocese of Latina-Terracina-Sezze-Priverno, in Lazio, has existed under this name since 1986. It is the historic diocese of Terracina, Priverno e Sezze, created in 1217, when the diocese of Terracina was combined with the diocese of Priverno and the diocese of Sezze...

  • Diocese of Rieti
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Rieti
    The Diocese of Rieti is a See of the Catholic Church in Italy. It is suffragan of Rome.-External links:* *...

  • Diocese of Sora-Aquino-Pontecorvo
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Sora-Aquino-Pontecorvo
    The Roman Catholic Diocese of Sora-Aquino-Pontecorvo is an ecclesiastical territory or diocese of the Roman Catholic Church in Italy. Erected in the 3rd century as the Diocese of Nyundo, it was renamed as the Diocese of Aquino, Sora e Pontecorvo on June 27, 1818, and later as the Diocese of...

  • Diocese of Tivoli
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Tivoli
    The diocese of Tivoli is a Roman Catholic ecclesiastical territory in Latium, Italy, which has existed since the 2nd century. In 2002 territory was added to it from the Territorial Abbey of Subiaco. The diocese is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Rome....

  • Diocese of Viterbo
    Roman Catholic Diocese of Viterbo
    The Roman Catholic diocese of Viterbo is a Catholic ecclesiastical territory in central Italy. It was called historically the diocese of Viterbo e Tuscania. Its name was changed to diocese of Viterbo, Acquapendente, Bagnoregio, Montefiascone, Tuscania e San Martino al Monte Cimino in 1986, and...

  • Territorial Abbey of Montecassino
  • Territorial Abbey of Santa Maria di Grottaferrata
  • Territorial Abbey of Subiaco
    Subiaco, Italy
    Subiaco is a town and comune in the Province of Rome, in Lazio, Italy, from Tivoli alongside the river Aniene. It is mainly renowned as a tourist and religious resort for its sacred grotto , in the St. Benedict's Abbey, and the other Abbey of St. Scholastica...


See also


External links