Episcopal Diocese of Maryland

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Diocese of Maryland
Maryland diocese.png
Ecclesiastical province Province III
Congregations 117
Members 23,000 families
Rite Episcopal
Cathedral Cathedral of the Incarnation, Baltimore
Current leadership
Bishop Eugene Sutton
Suffragans John L. Rabb
Location of the Diocese of Maryland
Location of the Diocese of Maryland

The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland forms part of Province 3 of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America. Having been divided twice, as discussed below, it now consists of the central, northern and western Maryland counties of Allegany, Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Calvert, Carroll, Frederick, Garrett, Harford, Howard, and Washington.


The Diocese of Maryland is one of the nine original Dioceses of the Episcopal Church, and traces its roots back to 1608 when Captain John Smith oversaw the first Christian worship in the upper Chesapeake Bay.[1] In 1692, a law passed by the province's General Assembly established the Church of England and the colony, which was divided into ten counties, was divided into 30 parishes. List of the original 30 Anglican parishes in the Province of Maryland Sometimes the parish church was centrally located; other times multiple churches or chapels served distant population centers within the parish.

In 1780, a meeting in Chestertown, Maryland in Kent County at Washington College of Anglican clergy and laymen led to the formation of the Diocese of Maryland. By 1783, at the end of the American Revolution, the developing Diocese had 47 parishes and about 38 clergy. List of post 1692 Anglican parishes in the Province of Maryland

In 1789, the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America was founded. The Diocese's first Bishop, the Right Reverend Thomas John Claggett, (1743-1816), was the first American Episcopal bishop consecrated in this country in 1792 at Trinity Church facing historic Wall Street in New York City. Among notable historical events in the Diocese is the first African-American Episcopal congregations in the South, St. James' Church, at Lafayette Square, in west Baltimore. Another first among Maryland's bishops was the election of Bishop John Gardner Murray as Presiding Bishop. He was the first elected primate of the Episcopal Church; for his predecessors, the senior member of the House of Bishops automatically assumed the Presiding position.

The diocese has been divided twice. First in 1868, the Eastern Shore counties of Maryland became the Diocese of Easton. Then in 1895, the District of Columbia and adjacent (and increasingly suburban) Montgomery and Prince George's, along with southern Maryland's Charles and St. Mary's counties became the Diocese of Washington.

In 2014, the Diocese elected the Rev. Canon Heather Cook as its first female bishop. [2]

The Diocese of Maryland has 117 congregations (12 are missions, the rest are parishes), and membership of more than 44,200. The Bishop's Seat is at the Cathedral of the Incarnation, on University Parkway, between North Charles Street and St. Paul Street in north Baltimore, near the neighborhoods of Roland Park and Charles Village. On March 29, 2008, the Rev. Canon Eugene Taylor Sutton was elected 14th bishop of the diocese [3] and consecrated June 28, 2008.



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Coordinates: 39°20′N 76°37′W / 39.333°N 76.617°W / 39.333; -76.617