In the Eastern Catholic Churches, major archbishop is a title for the chief hierarch of an autonomous (sui juris) particular Church that has not been "endowed with the patriarchal title". Major archbishops generally have the same rights, privileges, and jurisdiction as Eastern Catholic patriarchs, except where expressly provided otherwise, and rank immediately after them in precedence of honor.
In addition to their role governing their particular Church, major archbishops, like Eastern Catholic patriarchs, are ex officio members of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches in the Roman Curia. They are required to attend the annual general meeting of this congregation, as well as other sessions if they are visiting Rome or are otherwise able.
There are four major archbishops each leading a major archiepiscopal autonomous Church:
There was a strong movement within and after the Second Vatican Council to elevate Josyf Slipyj, then metropolitan of Lviv, for the Ukrainians, to the status of patriarch. Many of his admirers use this title for Slipyj when referring to him historically and many in Ukraine use this title for the current major archbishop even today. However, Pope Paul VI specifically declined to grant this title, instead creating this new title and appointing Slipyj the first "major archbishop" of Lviv (the seat has since been moved to Kiev). Slipyj's successors have only used the title of major archbishop.
The title "major archbishop" was first granted to the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church in 1963. The Syro-Malabar Church became major archiepiscopal in 1992, followed by the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church and the Romanian Greek Catholic Church in 2005.
Suggestions have been made at various times to elevate major archbishops to patriarchs, most notably the major archbishops of the Ukrainians and Syro-Malabars. Popes from Paul VI to Benedict XVI have rejected this suggestion, at least in part, on ecumenical grounds: it is the hope among Christians that these Catholic jurisdictions will one day be reunited with their Orthodox counterparts in a reunification of the Church; hence, establishing a "patriarchate" in Ukraine would be interpreted as an insult to the Russian Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow (as it would seem to the legitimacy of his claim to that title). The same applies in India, where such a move would insult non Catholic Patriarchs in Middle East.
Compared to other titles available to the heads of sui juris Eastern Catholic Churches, the title of "major archbishop" falls below "patriarch" and above "metropolitan archbishop". The title is used for archbishops of episcopal sees that were founded more recently than the patriarchal sees and are therefore less prestigious. Canon law generally treats major archbishops as equivalent to patriarchs, except where specifically provided otherwise. What differences there are between the two offices are mainly differences of ceremony or honor. Major archbishops rank immediately below patriarchs in the order of precedence of the Catholic Church. If made members of the College of Cardinals, major archbishops join the order of Cardinal-Priests, whereas Eastern Catholic patriarchs join the highest order as Cardinal-Bishops. Like patriarchs, major archbishops are elected by the synod of the sui iuris Church, but their election requires confirmation by the Pope, not the simple notification and request for communion required of patriarchs. On the other hand, metropolitan archbishops of Eastern Catholic Churches sui juris are appointed by the Pope (rather than elected by their synod) and have much less authority even within their own churches.
The title major archbishop in the Catholic Church is roughly equivalent to the patriarchal title catholicos in some Orthodox Churches. Catholicos is used internally by the Syro-Malankara Church for their major archbishop.
This section provides a complete list of every bishop who has held the title of major archbishop, organized according to the precedence of their titles, which follows the order in which their churches became major archiepiscopal. So far, every major archbishop has been a cardinal except for Cyril Baselios and Sviatoslav Shevchuk. Antony Padiyara and Lubomyr Husar are the only major archbishops to resign the office, rather than dying in it.
For a complete list of heads of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, including prior to its establishment as a major archiepiscopal church, see List of Leaders of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.
For a complete list of heads of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, including prior to its establishment as a major archiepiscopal church, see List of Major Archbishops of the Syro-Malabar Church.
For a complete list of heads of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, including prior to its establishment as a major archiepiscopal church, see List of Major Archbishops of Thiruvananthapuram.
For a complete list of heads of the Romanian Greek Catholic Church, including prior to its establishment as a major archiepiscopal church, see List of bishops of Făgăraș and Alba Iulia.
Metropolitan and Gate of all India Mar Padiyara Anthony (11 February 1921 – 23 March 2000) was a Syro Malabar Major Archbishop and cardinal. He was the First Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church. He was Major Archbishop of Ernakulam-Angamaly from 1985 to 1996, having previously served as Bishop of Ootacamund (1955–1970) and Archbishop of Changanassery (1970–1985). He was elevated to the cardinalate in 1988.Baselios Cleemis
Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis Thottunkal Maphrian (Malayalam: ബസേലിയോസ് ക്ലിമ്മീസ്) is the current Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church. He was named to the College of Cardinals of the Catholic Church by Pope Benedict XVI on 24 November 2012.At the moment of his selection, he was the youngest member of the College of Cardinals. He is the first cardinal of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church. On 31 January 2013, he was named a member of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches and the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue. He served as the President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India from 2014 to 2018. He has previously served as Chairman of the Kerala Catholic Bishops' Council.Bishop in the 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 doctrine, governing Catholics in his jurisdiction, sanctifying the world and representing the Church. Catholics trace the origins of the office of bishop to the apostles, who it is believed were endowed with a special charism by the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Catholics believe this special charism has been transmitted through an unbroken succession of bishops by the laying on of hands in the sacrament of holy orders.Diocesan bishops—known as eparchs in the Eastern Catholic Churches—are assigned to govern local regions within the Catholic Church known as dioceses in the Latin Church and eparchies in the Eastern Churches. Bishops are collectively known as the College of Bishops and can hold such additional titles as archbishop, cardinal, patriarch, or pope. As of 2009 there were approximately 5,100 bishops total in the Latin and Eastern churches of the Catholic Church.Bishops are always men. In addition, Canon 378 § 1 requires that a candidate for the Latin episcopacy should be:
outstanding in solid faith, good morals, piety, zeal for souls, wisdom, prudence, and human virtues, and endowed with other qualities which make him suitable to fulfill the office in question;
of good reputation;
at least thirty-five years old;
ordained to the presbyterate for at least five years;
in possession of a doctorate or at least a licentiate in sacred scripture, theology, or canon law from an institute of higher studies approved by the Apostolic See, or at least truly expert in the same disciplines.George Alencherry
Mar George Alencherry (born Geevarghese Alencherry) is a Syro Malabar Major Archbishop and cardinal, an Indian prelate of the Catholic Church. He is currently the Major Archbishop and Head of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church and Metropolitan of the Major Archeparchy of Ernakulam-Angamaly. He was elected by the Holy Synod of the Syro-Malabar Church in 2011 to succeed Cardinal Mar Varkey Vithayathil. He was created a cardinal of the Catholic Church on 18 February 2012. He was the first bishop of Thuckalay from 1997 to 2011.List of Major Archbishops of the Syro-Malabar Church
The Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Church is the head of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church and the Metropolitan of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Major Archeparchy of Ernakulam-Angamaly in Kerala, India.
The archdiocese was established in 1896, when the first archbishop was appointed. In 1923 the hierarchy of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church was established, and the Archbishop of Ernakulam-Angamaly was elevated to Major Archbishop and given authority over the whole church.List of bishops of Făgăraș and Alba Iulia
This is a list of Bishops of Făgăraș and Alba Iulia, who are the Primates of Romanian Church United with Rome, Greek-Catholic.Lubomyr Husar
Lubomyr Husar MSU (Ukrainian: Любомир Гузар, Liubomyr Huzar; 26 February 1933 – 31 May 2017) was the major archbishop (first elected in independent Ukraine) of the Ukrainian Catholic Church, a minority church in Ukraine but the largest sui juris Eastern church in full communion with the Holy See. He was also a Cardinal of the Catholic Church. After the transfer of the see of Lviv to Kiev in 2005, he was the Ukrainian Catholic Major Archbishop of Kiev-Galicia. In February 2011 he became Major Archeparch Emeritus after he resigned due to ill health.Lucian Mureșan
Lucian Mureșan (born 23 May 1930) is the first and current Major Archbishop of the Greek Catholic Archdiocese of Făgăraș and Alba Iulia and a cardinal of the Catholic Church. As Major Archbishop of Făgăraș and Alba Iulia (resident in Blaj), he is the head of the Romanian Church United with Rome, Greek-Catholic.Order of precedence in the Catholic Church
Precedence signifies the right to enjoy a prerogative of honor before other persons; for example, to have the most distinguished place in a procession, a ceremony, or an assembly, to have the right to express an opinion, cast a vote, or append a signature before others, to perform the most honorable offices.The order of precedence in the Catholic Church is organized by rank within the hierarchy according first to order, then jurisdiction, and finally to titular or ad personam honors granted to individuals despite a lack of jurisdiction. Emeritus ecclesiastics are counted among the latter.
Precedence may also apply to feasts or actions, as for example in the order of precedence of liturgical days.Orientalium Ecclesiarum
Orientalium Ecclesiarum is the Second Vatican Council's Decree on the Eastern Catholic Churches. One of the shortest conciliar documents, it was approved by a vote of 2,110 to 39 and promulgated by Pope Paul VI on November 21, 1964. "Orientalium Ecclesiarum" is Latin for "of [the] Eastern Churches," and is taken from the first line of the decree, as is customary with Roman Catholic official documents. The decree recognizes the right of Eastern Catholics to keep their own distinct liturgical practices while remaining in full communion with the Holy See. The decree exhorts Eastern Catholics to "take steps to return to their ancestral traditions." This aspect of the decree was directed against Latinisation.The document specifies some of the autonomous powers of the Eastern Churches. In particular, the Patriarch (or where applicable, major archbishop) and synod have the power to establish eparchies, to nominate bishops within their patriarchate, to legislate the rights and obligations of the minor orders (including subdiaconate), and to determine the date for celebrating Easter within their rite. It furthermore recognized the ancient practice in the East regarding the sacrament of confirmation (Chrismation), stating that all Eastern priests have the power to administer this sacrament using chrism blessed by a bishop. One of the implications of this is the further practice of infant communion was formally recognized.Patriarch
The highest-ranking bishops in Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, the Catholic Church (above major archbishop and primate), and the Church of the East are termed patriarchs (and in certain cases also popes).
The word is derived from Greek πατριάρχης (patriarchēs), meaning "chief or father of a family", a compound of πατριά (patria), meaning "family", and ἄρχειν (archein), meaning "to rule".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 termed patriarchy. Historically, a patriarch has often been the logical choice to act as ethnarch of the community identified with his religious confession within a state or empire of a different creed (such as Christians within the Ottoman Empire). The term developed an ecclesiastical meaning, within the Christian Church. The office and the ecclesiastical circumscription of a Christian patriarch is termed a patriarchate.
Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are referred to as the three patriarchs of the people of Israel, and the period during which they lived is termed the Patriarchal Age. The word patriarch originally acquired its religious meaning in the Septuagint version of the Bible.Romanian Greek Catholic Church
The Romanian Greek Catholic Church or Romanian Church United with Rome, Greek-Catholic (Romanian: Biserica Română Unită cu Roma, Greco-Catolică) is a sui iuris Eastern Catholic Church, in full union with the Roman Catholic Church. It has the rank of a Major Archiepiscopal Church and it uses the Byzantine liturgical rite in the Romanian language.
Since 1994, Cardinal Lucian Mureșan, Archbishop of Făgăraș and Alba Iulia, serves as head of the Romanian Greek-Catholic Church. On December 16, 2005, as the Romanian Church United with Rome, Greek-Catholic was elevated to the rank of a Major Archiepiscopal Church by Benedict XVI, Lucian Mureșan became its first major archbishop. Mureşan was eventually created a cardinal, at the Consistory of February 18, 2012.
Besides the Archeparchy of Fǎgǎraș and Alba Iulia, there are five more Greek-Catholic eparchies in Romania (Eparchy of Oradea Mare, Eparchy of Cluj-Gherla, Eparchy of Lugoj, Eparchy of Maramureș, and Eparchy of Saint Basil the Great of Bucharest), as well as one eparchy overseas, the Romanian Catholic Eparchy of St George's in Canton, answering directly to the Major Archbishop and the Holy See, in the United States of America and Canada.According to data published in the 2016 Annuario Pontificio, the Romanian Greek-Catholic Church had 504,280 members, 8 bishops, 1,225 parishes, some 835 diocesan priests and 235 seminarians of its own rite at the end of 2012. However, according to the 2011 Romanian government census, the number of its followers living in Romania was as low as 150,593, of which 124,563 are ethnic Romanians. The dispute over this figure is mentioned in the United States Department of State report on religious freedom in Romania.In addition, there are five other Catholic dioceses in Romania, belonging to the Latin Church, whose members are more numerous.St. Mary's Cathedral, Pattom
St. Mary's Malankara Syrian Catholic Cathedral, Pattom, Trivandrum is the central place of worship of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church. It is the See of the Major Archbishop-Catholicos of Trivandrum. The tombs of the Servant of God Archbishop Geevarghese Mar Ivanios, Archbishop Benedict Mar Gregorios and of Major Archbishop Cyril Baselios Catholicos are there.
The foundation stone of this Cathedral was laid by Archbishop Mar Ivanios in 1950, and the Cathedral was consecrated by Archbishop Benedict Mar Gregorios on 22 February 1965.
Pope John Paul II visited the Cathedral on 8 February 1986.
The Cathedral was renovated in 2008. The blessing of the renovated Cathedral was on 8 November 2008. There were 531 families in the parish community.St. Mary, Queen of Peace Basilica
The St. Mary, Queen of Peace Basilica, located in the Palayam/Cantonment area of the city of Thiruvananthapuram, in the state of Kerala, India, is the first Syro-Malankara Catholic Church to be elevated to the rank of a Catholic basilica. It is the fifth basilica in Kerala.
On 10 November. 2008, at the St. Mary's Cathedral, Pattom, Trivandrum, Leonardo Sandri, Papal representative and Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, announced the designation of the Queen of Peace Pro-Cathedral in Thiruvananthapuram as a basilica. Major Archbishop Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis Catholicos dedicated the church as the St. Mary, Queen of Peace Basilica on 7 December 2008. Kerala Minister M. Vijayakumar presided over a meeting that followed.Syro-Malabar Catholic Major Archeparchy of Ernakulam-Angamaly
Major Archeparchy of Ernakulam-Angamaly is an archeparchy and the See of the Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church. Mar George Alencherry is the present Major Archbishop; Mar Jacob Manathodath is the current apostolic administrator sede plena; Mar Sebastian Adayantharath and Mar Jose Puthenveetil are the current auxiliary bishops. Blessed Rani Maria, Venerable Payyappilly Varghese Kathanar and Servant of God Mary Celine Payyappilly are the saints from the archeparchy. Kothamangalam and Idukki are the two suffragan eparchies of the archeparchy.Ukrainian Catholic Archiepiscopal Exarchate of Donetsk
The Ukrainian Catholic Archiepiscopal Exarchate of Donetsk is one of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (Byzantine Rite, Ukrainian language)'s five Archiepiscopal Exarchate (Eastern Catholic pre-diocesan missionary jurisdiction under a Major Archbishop) in Eastern Ukraine.
The current, and first, archiepiscopal exarch is Bishop Stepan Meniok, C.Ss.R..
Its cathedral episcopal see is the Cathedral of the Virgin of Mercy, in Donetsk.Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of Sambir–Drohobych
The Eparchy of Sambir – Drohobych is an eparchy of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, in the ecclesiastical province of Kyiv-Halych.
The first eparch was Yulian Voronovskyi, M.S.U., who was appointed to this position by Pope John Paul II on 30 March 1994, having previously been as Archiepiscopal Administrator of the eparchy from its inception in 1993.
Eparch Yaroslav Pryriz C.S.S.R., who had been Coadjutor Bishop of the Eparchy, became Eparch when Sviatoslav Shevchuk, Major Archbishop of Kyiv-Halych (Kiev), Ukraine, with the consent of the Permanent Synod meeting in Curitiba, Brazil, on Saturday, 10 September 2011, and having informed the Apostolic See, accepted the resignation of Eparch Voronovskyi.Ukrainian Catholic Major Archeparchy of Kiev–Galicia
The Major Archeparchy of Kiev–Galicia, or Kyiv–Halych is the only major archeparchy of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church. The cathedral church, the Patriarchal Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ, as of 2013 was under construction in Kyiv.Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church
The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC; Ukrainian: Українська греко-католицька церква (УГКЦ), romanized: Ukrajins'ka hreko-katolic'ka cerkva; Latin: Ecclesia Graeco-Catholica Ucrainae) is a Byzantine Rite Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Holy See. It is the second-largest particular church (sui juris) in the Catholic Church (after the Latin, or Roman, Church).
The church is one of the successor churches to the acceptance of Christianity by Grand Prince Vladimir the Great of Kiev, in 988. Its predecessor appeared in 1596 with the signing of the Union of Brest between the Ruthenian Orthodox Church (Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth) led by Michael Rohoza and the Holy See. Following the partitions of Poland, in 1808 the eparchies of the original Ruthenian Uniate Church (Latin: Ecclesia Ruthena unita) were split three ways between the Austrian Empire (3), Prussia (1), and the Russian Empire (5). Those three eparchies under Austrian jurisdiction were reorganized as the Greek Catholic Church soon after liquidation of all five eparchies that ended up in Russia. The Greek Catholic Church in Austria became a survivor of the original uniate church of the Brest Union (the other being the Uzhhorod Union).
In 1963 the church was recognized as Ukrainian through the efforts of Yosyf Slipyi.
The ordinary (or hierarch) of the church holds the title of Major archbishop of Kiev-Halych and All Ruthenia, though the hierarchs and faithful of the church have acclaimed their ordinary as "Patriarch" and have requested Papal recognition of, and elevation to, this title. Major archbishop is a unique title within the Catholic Church that was introduced in 1963 as part of political compromise. Since March 2011 the head of the church is Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk.
Within Ukraine itself, the UGCC is a minority of the religious population, being a distant second to the majority Eastern Orthodox faith. The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is the second largest religious organization in Ukraine in terms of number of communities. In terms of number of members, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church ranks third in allegiance among the population of Ukraine after the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) and the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. Currently, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church predominates in three western oblasts of Ukraine, including the majority of the population of Lviv, but constitutes a small minority elsewhere in the country. The church has followed the spread of the Ukrainian diaspora and now has some 40 hierarchs in over a dozen countries on four continents, including three other metropolitan bishops in Poland, the United States, and Canada.
of the faithful