Archbishop of Petra
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The Archbishop of Petra was established during the Crusader era and served the diocese of Palaestrina III, the Oultrejordain area, and traditionally included Saint Catherine's Monastery on Mount Sinai, although Crusader protection rarely extended that far.
The Islamic conquest in the 7th century had eliminated Byzantine control of the area and with it the protection of the Christian communities. However, Palestinian and Syrian Christian communities had remained in the region well into the Islamic occupation period and with the arrival of the Crusader Principalities, they were placed under the supervision of the diocese with the expectation of restoring the area's Christian roots. Frankish communities soon added to their number and before Saladin's reconquest, the area had an increasing number of Catholic communities. Following the destruction of the Kingdom of Jerusalem by Saladin, what little protection for Christians had existed was eliminated and the nascent Christian communities were soon destroyed.
Nonetheless, several isolated monasteries at various levels of precarious existence continued, thereby creating the necessity of appointing Archbishops well into the modern period. However, by the late 19th and early 20th centuries what vestiges of monastic life and their few extant congregants which remained were effectively eliminated by Bedouin and Turkish raids and with it the diocese lapsed.
List of Archbishops of Petra
- Guerard 12th. cent.
- Antonio Saverio Gentili (1727–1732)
- Federico Marcello Lante Montefeltro della Rovere (1732–?)
- Filippo Acciajuoli (1743–?)
- Giuseppe Simonetti (1761–?)
- Francesco Saverio de Zelada (1766–?)
- Giuseppe Firrao jr (1782–1801)
- Alessandro Giustiniani (1822–?)
- Fulco Luigi Ruffo-Scilla (1887–1892)
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