Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Strasbourg

This article is about the archdiocese. For the Prince-Bishopric, see Prince-Bishopric of Strasbourg.
Archdiocese of Strasbourg
Archidioecesis Argentoratensis o Argentinensis
Archidiocèse de Strasbourg

Country France
Metropolitan Immediately subject to the Holy See
Area 8,280 km2 (3,200 sq mi)
- Total
- Catholics
(as of 2010)
1,360,000 (71.6%)
Denomination Roman Catholic
Rite Roman Rite
Established 4th century (Diocese)
1 June 1988 (Archdiocese)
Cathedral Cathedral of Notre Dame in Strasbourg
Patron saint Saint Arbogast
Current leadership
Pope Francis
Archbishop Jean-Pierre Grallet
Auxiliary Bishops Vincent Dollmann
Christian George Nicolas Kratz
Emeritus Bishops Joseph Doré Archbishop Emeritus (1997-2007)
Official website
Part of the series on
Rot un Wiss, flag of Alsace since 11th century.
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The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Strasbourg (Latin: Archidioecesis Argentoratensis o Argentinensis; French: Archidiocèse de Strasbourg; German: Erzbistum Straßburg) is an archdiocese in Strasbourg, Alsace, France, of the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church in France, first mentioned in 343. The archdiocese, with seat in the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Strasbourg as mother church, is unique in France as it has no suffragans and is an immediately subject to the Holy See in Rome. It is currently headed by Archbishop Jean-Pierre Grallet, in office since April 2007.

The Diocese of Strasbourg was first mentioned in 343, belonging to the ecclesiastical province of the Archbishopric of Mainz since Carolingian times. Archeological diggings below the current Église Saint-Étienne in 1948 and 1956 have unearthed the apse of a church dating back to the late 4th or early 5th century, considered the oldest church in Alsace. It is supposed that this was the first seat of the Diocese.[1] Since the 15th century, the diocesan seat has been the cathedral of Notre-Dame de Strasbourg. The bishop was the ruler of an ecclesiastical principality (prince-bishopric) in the Holy Roman Empire during the Middle Ages and Early Modern period. For this state, see Prince-Bishopric of Strasbourg. By the Concordat of 1801 the Strasbourg diocese became a public-law corporation of cult (French: établissement public du culte) and the diocesan ambit of Strasbourg was redrawn and all its areas east of the river Rhine were redeployed, forming a part of the Archdiocese of Freiburg since 1821. In 1871 the bulk of the diocese became part of German Empire, while small fringes remained with France. In 1874 Strasbourg diocese, with its diocesan ambit reconfined to the borders of then German Alsace, became an exempt diocese immediately subject to the Holy See. When the 1905 French law on the Separation of the Churches and the State was enacted, doing away with public-law religious corporations, this did not apply to the Strasbourg diocese then being within Germany.

After World War I Alsace along with the diocese was returned to France, but the concordatary status has been preserved since as part of the Local law in Alsace-Moselle. Although not as metropolitan of an ecclesiastical province, the diocese was elevated to an archdiocese on 1 June 1988 by Pope John Paul II. The bishop of this see is appointed by the French president according to the Concordat of 1801. The concordat further provides for the clergy being paid by the government and Roman Catholic pupils in public schools can receive religious instruction according to archdiocesan guide lines.

As of 31 December 2003, the area of the archdiocese comprised a total of 1,713,416 inhabitants of which 75.9% (1,300,000) are Catholics, divided in 762 parishes covering an area of 8,280 km². Also, 619 diocese priests, 50 deacons, 288 ordained priests and 1,728 nuns belong to the archdiocese.


See also


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Coordinates: 48°34′53″N 7°45′06″E / 48.5813°N 7.75162°E / 48.5813; 7.75162

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