|Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis
Archidiocesis Paulopolitana et Minneapolitana
The coat of arms of the archdiocese
|Ecclesiastical province||Saint Paul and Minneapolis|
|Area||6,187 sq mi (16,020 km2)|
|(as of 2010)
|Established||July 19, 1850 (167 years ago)|
|Cathedral||Cathedral of Saint Paul (Saint Paul)|
|Co-cathedral||Basilica of Saint Mary (Minneapolis)|
|Patron saint||Saint Paul|
|Auxiliary Bishops||Andrew H. Cozzens|
|Emeritus Bishops||Harry Joseph Flynn
John Clayton Nienstedt
Lee A. Piché
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis (Latin: Archidioecesis Paulopolitana et Minneapolitana) is an ecclesiastical territory or diocese of the Catholic Church in the United States. It is led by the prelature of an archbishop which administers the archdiocese from the cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. The archbishop has both a cathedral and co-cathedral: the mother church, the Cathedral of Saint Paul in Saint Paul and the co-cathedral, the Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis.
The archdiocese has 188 parish churches in twelve counties of Minnesota. It counts in its membership an approximate total of 750,000 people. It has two seminaries, the Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity and Saint John Vianney College Seminary. Its official newspaper is The Catholic Spirit.
Prior to the founding of the diocese, the territory that made up the diocese at the time of its founding was under the jurisdiction of a number of different Catholic prelates. Most of these were purely academic as there was no Catholic presence in the area. Among the more notable of these was the Archdiocese of Saint Louis and the Dubuque Diocese. During this later period the church first came into the area with the arrival of missionaries and European settlers.
The original see was canonically erected by Pope Pius IX on July 19, 1850 as the Diocese of Saint Paul of Minnesota, a suffragan episcopal see of the Archdiocese of Saint Louis. The Diocese's territory was taken from that of Dubuque, and its authority spread over all of Minnesota Territory, which consisted of the area which now composes the states of Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota and also comprises the modern archdiocese's ecclesiastical province. Its first Ordinary was Bishop Joseph Crétin, whose name, along with that of another notable early bishop, John Ireland, has since become embedded into the culture of the region.
In February 1875 it was transferred from the ecclesiastical province of St. Louis to that of Milwaukee. Pope Leo XIII elevated the see to the rank of archdiocese on May 4, 1888 and its name was changed to reflect this. Pope Paul VI once again instituted a name change for the see on July 11, 1966. Reflecting the growth of the Catholic Church in the region, it became the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, the name it retains today. His Excellency, the Most Reverend Archbishop John Clayton Nienstedt, succeeded to the post on the retirement of his predecessor, Archbishop Harry Flynn, on May 2, 2008. However, in an effort to help the Archdiocese recover from criticisms he had faced for the handling of cases of sexual abuse of minors, in particular, the case of a now-laicized priest, and in the wake of unproven accusations against him that were found to not be substantial enough to proceed to trial, he resigned, along with one of his Auxiliary Bishops, Lee Piche, on Monday, June 15, 2015. Coadjutor Archbishop Bernard Hebda of Newark was named as the Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese by Pope Francis the same day, while retaining his other duties, until the appointment of Archbishop Emeritus Nienstedt's successor by the Pope. On March 24, 2016, it was announced that Hebda was named as Archbishop of the Archdiocese and would cease as Coadjutor of Newark.
In January 2015, the archdiocese filed for bankruptcy. With the filing of bankruptcies by also the Diocese of Duluth and the Diocese of New Ulm, Minnesota set the record for having more Catholic bankruptcies than any other state in the United States of America.
This is a list of the bishops who have served the Archdiocese through its history.
+ = deceased