AskDefine | Define archiepiscopal

Dictionary Definition

archiepiscopal adj : of or associated with an archbishop; "anarchiepiscopal see" [syn: archepiscopal]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. of or relating to an archbishop or an archbishopric

Related terms

Extensive Definition

portal Christianity In Christianity, an archbishop is an elevated bishop. In the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion and others, this means that they lead a diocese of particular importance called an archdiocese, or in the Anglican Communion an Ecclesiastical Province, but this is not always the case. An archbishop is equivalent to a bishop in sacred matters but simply has a higher precedence or degree of prestige. Thus, when someone who is already a bishop becomes an archbishop, that person does not receive Holy Orders again or any other sacrament; however, in the rarer case when a person who is not a bishop at all becomes an archbishop, they will need to be ordained a bishop before being created an archbishop and installed. The word comes from the Greek αρχι, which means "first" or "chief", and επισκοπος, which means "over-seer" or "supervisor".

Western Christianity

In Western Christianity, an archbishop is entitled to a few extra privileges that a simple bishop does not receive. First, an archbishop's coat of arms looks different. Roman Catholic archbishops are allowed ten tassles a side on their coat of arms, while a bishop only receives six. In addition, an archbishop can also place an archiepiscopal cross (two bars instead of one) behind his shield. In the Roman Catholic church this cross used to be carried immediately before archbishops in liturgical processions, but this is now not always done. In the Anglican Communion an archiepsicopal or primatial cross is carried before an archbishop in procession. Also in liturgical protocol, archbishops precede simple bishops.
Otherwise, archbishops dress and are styled the same as a normal bishop. Exceptions to style occur in the Anglican Communion and in countries where the Anglican Communion is prevalent. In those places, an archbishop is styled The Most Reverend while a simple bishop is styled The Right Reverend.
Most of the following applies equally to the Latin rite Roman Catholic Church and the churches of the Anglican Communion, though in the latter, the only archbishops are the provincial metropolitans and the church primates.

Archbishops of archdioceses

Most archbishops are called so because they are in charge of an archdiocese, a diocese of particular importance. Most of the time, this importance is because the archdiocese is the metropolitan see of the ecclesiastical province in which the see is located. These metropolitan archbishops, in addition to the usual ceremonial privileges of archbishops, hold the responsibilities of a metropolitan bishop over the suffragan bishops of the province and are thus the only archbishops who wear the pallium by right. In the Roman Catholic Church, if the archdiocese is particularly significant, the archbishop may become a cardinal.
Sometimes, a diocese is an archdiocese because of its history or size and not because of its jurisdictional importance. Their archbishops, while retaining the ceremonial privileges of archbishops, are really normal residential bishops and usually are suffragan to some metropolitan bishop. Most of these non-metropolitan archdioceses are located in Europe, and a few examples are the Archdiocese of Strasbourg, which is not in any ecclesiastical province, and the Archdiocese of Avignon, whose archbishop is a suffragan of the Metropolitan Archbishop of Marseille
Some titular sees are/were archiepiscopal, so their incumbents are also archbishops. These titular archbishops retain the privileges of archbishops but have the jurisdiction of neither a metropolitan nor a residential bishop.

Other archbishops

A residential archbishop who resigns his see and does not take up another one retains the title Archbishop Emeritus of the last see he occupied before the resignation. This occurs when an archbishop retires or is transferred to some other non-diocesan office, such as the Roman Curia. In the past the Pope would normally bestow a titular see on every retired bishop and every bishop who transferred to the Curia, so this recent canonical innovation was instituted to conserve titular sees for active auxiliary bishops and members of the Roman Curia who have not had a diocesan appointment yet.
If archdiocese X has a coadjutor bishop, his official title is Coadjutor Archbishop of X. However, until he succeeds to the archiepiscopal see, the coadjutor archbishop is treated as an important bishop and diocesan official and is considered an auxiliary bishop with the privilege of succession, and not as a regular archbishop.
Finally some archbishops hold their privileges ad personam. This means that the archiepiscopal dignity is conferred on them alone and not their diocese. The primates of the Anglican Communion are this kind of archbishop, since they only hold archiepiscopal rights for the duration of their presidency. In the Latin-rite Roman Catholic Church, the Pope grants ad personam archiepiscopal privileges, which usually endure perpetually. The bishop has a higher authority than an archbishop.

Eastern Christianity

In the Eastern churches (Catholic and Orthodox) archbishops and metropolitans are distinct, although a metropolitan may be referred to as metropolitan archbishop. In the Greek Orthodox Church, archbishops outrank metropolitans, and have the same rights as Eastern Orthodox metropolitans. The Oriental Orthodox generally follow the pattern of the Slavic Orthodox with respect to the archbishop/metropolitan distinction.
archiepiscopal in Belarusian (Tarashkevitsa): Арцыбіскуп
archiepiscopal in Bosnian: Nadbiskup
archiepiscopal in Bulgarian: Архиепископ
archiepiscopal in Catalan: Arquebisbe
archiepiscopal in Czech: Arcibiskup
archiepiscopal in Welsh: Archesgob
archiepiscopal in Danish: Ærkebiskop
archiepiscopal in German: Erzbischof
archiepiscopal in Estonian: Peapiiskop
archiepiscopal in Modern Greek (1453-): Αρχιεπίσκοπος
archiepiscopal in Spanish: Arzobispo
archiepiscopal in Esperanto: Ĉefepiskopo
archiepiscopal in French: Archevêque
archiepiscopal in Western Frisian: Aartsbiskop
archiepiscopal in Scottish Gaelic: Àrd-easbaig
archiepiscopal in Galician: Arcebispo
archiepiscopal in Korean: 대주교
archiepiscopal in Croatian: Nadbiskup
archiepiscopal in Indonesian: Uskup Agung
archiepiscopal in Icelandic: Erkibiskup
archiepiscopal in Italian: Arcivescovo
archiepiscopal in Hebrew: ארכיבישוף
archiepiscopal in Georgian: არქიეპისკოპოსი
archiepiscopal in Swahili (macrolanguage): Askofu mkuu
archiepiscopal in Latin: Archiepiscopus
archiepiscopal in Lithuanian: Arkivyskupas
archiepiscopal in Hungarian: Érsek
archiepiscopal in Dutch: Aartsbisschop
archiepiscopal in Japanese: 大主教
archiepiscopal in Norwegian: Erkebiskop
archiepiscopal in Norwegian Nynorsk: Erkebiskop
archiepiscopal in Polish: Arcybiskup
archiepiscopal in Portuguese: Arcebispo
archiepiscopal in Romanian: Arhiepiscop
archiepiscopal in Russian: Архиепископ
archiepiscopal in Simple English: Archbishop
archiepiscopal in Slovak: Arcibiskup
archiepiscopal in Slovenian: Nadškof
archiepiscopal in Serbian: Архиепископ
archiepiscopal in Serbo-Croatian: Arhiepiskop
archiepiscopal in Finnish: Arkkipiispa
archiepiscopal in Swedish: Ärkebiskop
archiepiscopal in Turkish: Başpiskopos
archiepiscopal in Ukrainian: Архієпископ
archiepiscopal in Chinese: 總主教
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