Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Athens

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Archdiocese of Athens
Archidioecesis Atheniensis
Ιερά Αρχιεπισκοπή Καθολικών Αθηνών
Country Greece
Metropolitan Immediately Subject to the Holy See
Area 46,775 km2 (18,060 sq mi)
- Total
- Catholics
(as of 2006)
101,600 (1.6%)
Rite Roman Rite
Established 23 July 1875
Cathedral Καθεδρικός Ναός Αγ. Διονυσίου Αρεοπαγίτου των Καθολικών
(Cathedral Basilica of St. Dionysius the Areopagite)
Current leadership
Pope Francis
Metropolitan Archbishop Nikolaos Foskolos

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Athens (Latin: Archidioecesis Atheniensis or Athenarum) is an archdiocese of the Catholic Church located in the city of Athens in Greece. The seat is the neoclassic Cathedral Basilica of St. Dionysius the Areopagite.


The See of Athens is one of the oldest Christian bishoprics, dating back to Hierotheos the Thesmothete in the mid-1st century AD. Ca. 800, it was raised to a metropolitan see.

In 1205, the city was captured by the Crusaders, who had conquered Constantinople and dissolved the Byzantine Empire the year before. The city's incumbent Greek Orthodox bishop, Michael Choniates, retired to the island of Ceos, and a Roman Catholic archbishop was installed in his place, with the French cleric Berard being elected to the post in 1206. As the premier see of Central Greece, Athens had several suffragans: Negroponte, Thermopylae, Davleia, Aulon, Oreoi, Karystos, Koroneia, Megara, Ceos, Andros and Skyros.

With the conquest of the Duchy of Athens by the Ottomans in 1456, the last Latin Archbishop, Nicholas Protimo, fled to Venetian-held Euboea, where he died in 1482. The Catholic see remained vacant thereafter, while the Ottomans allowed the Orthodox bishops of Athens, who had been continued to be appointed as titular holders during the period of Latin rule, to resume residence in the city.

On 23 July 1875, the see was restored as the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Athens, ministering to the Roman Catholic inhabitants of the Greek capital and most of mainland Greece.


See also[edit]