Episcopal Diocese of Kentucky

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Diocese of Kentucky
Diocese of Kentucky seal.jpg
Ecclesiastical province Province IV
Congregations 36
Members 8,380
Rite Episcopal
Cathedral Christ Church Cathedral
Current leadership
Bishop Terry Allen White
Location of the Diocese of Kentucky
Location of the Diocese of Kentucky
Christ Church Cathedral, Louisville

The Episcopal Diocese of Kentucky is a diocese of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America, encompassing the western half of the state of Kentucky.


The diocese, which originally comprised all of Kentucky, consecrated its first bishop, Benjamin Bosworth Smith, in 1832. He served until 1884, and became the ninth presiding bishop in 1868 after which time he was permanently resident in New York (though he had been partly resident there since 1866), episcopal duties in the Diocese of Kentucky being allocated to an assistant bishop.[1]

During the episcopate of the second bishop, Thomas Underwood Dudley, the diocese was divided to form the Diocese of Kentucky covering the western half of the state and the Diocese of Lexington covering the eastern half. The establishment of the new diocese took effect in 1895, when Dudley, who continued as Bishop of Kentucky, took Christ Church Cathedral in Louisville as the episcopal seat.[2]

In spite of its history of nearly 180 years, the Diocese has had only seven diocesan bishops, including Smith's immensely long episcopate of 52 years, which is thought to be the longest single episcopate in Anglican history.

There are 36 parishes in the diocese, with about 10,500 baptized members. A majority of the members live in the Louisville area, with the remainder scattered throughout southern and western Kentucky, primarily in communities with more than 10,000 residents.

The Episcopal Theological Seminary in Kentucky, the fourth seminary of the Episcopal Church, was established in 1834. Among the diocese's other major institutions, All Saints Retreat and Conference Center was founded in 1957 on Rough River Lake in Grayson County.

Edwin F. (Ted) Gulick Jr., was consecrated and installed as 7th Bishop of Kentucky on April 17, 1994. In October 2008, Gulick announced his retirement plans and called for the election of his successor. On June 5, 2010, Terry Allen White, Dean of Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral in Kansas City, Missouri, in the Diocese of West Missouri, was elected on the second ballot. His consecration as the 8th Bishop of Kentucky occurred on September 25, 2010. He was seated at Christ Church Cathedral on September 26, 2010.[3]

Bishops of Kentucky[edit]

Honorific & Name Dates
1st Benjamin Bosworth Smith 1832-1884 (Presiding Bishop 1868-1884)
2nd Thomas Underwood Dudley 1884-1904 (Coadjutor Bishop, 1875-1884)
3rd Charles Edward Woodcock 1905-1935
4th Charles Clingman 1936-1954
5th Charles G. Marmion 1954-1974
6th David Benson Reed 1974-1994 (Coadjutor Bishop, 1972-1974)
7th Edwin F. (Ted) Gulick Jr. 1994-2010
8th Terry Allen White 2010–present

Suffragan and Assisting Bishops[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Aldred Lee, Memorial Discourse to the 56th Annual Council of the Diocese of Kentucky September 24, 1884
  2. ^ 'Episcopal Church' in The Kentucky Encyclopedia, University Press of Kentucky, 1992, pp.295-296.
  3. ^ Episcopal Life Online item, January 25, 2010

External links[edit]