Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Arabia

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Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Arabia

Apostolicus Vicariatus Arabiae Meridionalis

النيابة الرسولية من جنوب الجزيرة العربية
United Arab Emirates
Area929,969 km2 (359,063 sq mi)
DenominationRoman Catholic
Sui iuris churchLatin Church
RiteRoman Rite, Maronite, Syro-Malabar, Syro-Malankara, Coptic Catholic
CathedralSt. Joseph's Cathedral, Abu Dhabi
Current leadership
Episcopal VicarBishop Paul Hinder
Apostolisches Vikariat Südliches Arabien.png
Website of the Apostolic Vicariate

The Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Arabia (Latin: Vicariatus Apostolicus Arabiæ Meridionalis) is an apostolic vicariate of the Catholic Church with territorial jurisdiction for Oman, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. The vicar apostolic of the vicariate is Paul Hinder, OFM Cap. It was first established in 1888 (as the Apostolic Vicariate of Aden) and took its current name in 2011. The see of the vicar apostolic is in St. Joseph's Cathedral in Abu Dhabi. Since 1916 it has been in the care of the Capuchins of Florence.


The territory was originally part of the Vicariate Apostolic of the Gallas, but it was separated into an apostolic prefecture by Pope Pius IX on 21 January 1875. On 25 April 1888, Pope Leo XIII made the Apostolic Vicarate of Aden, located in Yemen. On the 28 June 1889, the name was changed to the Vicariate Apostolic of Arabia, responsible for the countries of the Arabian Peninsula and surrounding region: Bahrain, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Somalia and Yemen.[1]

On 29 June 1953, the then Apostolic Prefecture of Kuwait (which has become the Apostolic Vicariate of Northern Arabia) was separated from the Apostolic Vicariate of Arabia. In 1973, the see of the jurisdiction was transferred from Aden to St. Joseph's Cathedral in Abu Dhabi.[2] A subsequent redrawing of boundaries in 2011 reduced its jurisdiction to the countries of Oman, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

The vicariate has been governed by the Capuchin friars since 1916.[1]

Apostolic Vicars of Southern Arabia[edit]

  1. Louis-Callixte Lasserre, OFM Cap. (1888 – April 1900)
  2. Bernard Thomas Edward Clark, OFM Cap. (21 March 1902 – 18 June 1910)
  3. Raffaele Presutti, OFM Cap. (13 September 1910 – 1915)
  4. Evangelista Latino Enrico Vanni, OFM Cap. (15 April 1916 – 1925)
  5. Pacifico Tiziano Micheloni, OFM Cap. (25 April 1933 – 6 July 1936)
  6. Giovanni Tirinnanzi, OFM Cap. (2 July 1937 – 27 January 1949)[3]
  7. Irzio Luigi Magliacani, OFM Cap. (25 December 1949 – 1969)
  8. Giovanni Bernardo Gremoli, OFM Cap. (2 October 1975 – 21 March 2005)
  9. Paul Hinder, OFM Cap. (21 March 2005 – ) [4]



  • 929,969 km²


  • Total population: 42,948,063
  • Total Catholic Population: 998,500
  • Parishes: 16
  • Diocesan priests: 17
  • Priests belonging to Religious Institutes: 51
  • Total Priests: 68
  • Permanent deacons living in the diocese: 1
  • Professed non-priest Men Religious belonging to Religious Institutes: 1
  • Professed Women Religious belonging to Religious Institutes: 53

List of Churches under The Jurisdiction of The Vicar[edit]

United Arab Emirates[edit]

Abu Dhabi - St. Joseph's Cathedral

Mussafah - St. Paul's Church

Al Ain - St. Mary’s Church

Ruwais - St. John the Baptist Church

Dubai - St. Mary’s Church

Jebel Ali - St. Francis of Assisi Church

Sharjah - St. Michael’s Church

Ras Al Khaimah - St. Anthony of Padua Church

Fujairah - Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church


Muscat - Holy Spirit Church , Sts. Peter and Paul Church

Salalah - St. Francis Xavier Church

Sohar - St. Anthony’s Church


Aden - St. Francis of Assisi Church

Hodeidah - Sacred Heart Church

Sana'a - Church of Mary Help of Christians

Taiz - St. Therese of the Child Jesus Church

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Vicariate Apostolic of Arabia
  2. ^ Vicariate Apostolic of Arabia Archived 2006-08-25 at the Wayback Machine, url accessed September 10, 2006
  3. ^ "Bishop chancery". Catholic Church of Our Lady of the Rosary. Retrieved 2011-04-17.
  4. ^ Arabia (Vicariate Apostolic) [Catholic-Hierarchy]

External links[edit]