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Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chambéry–Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne–Tarentaise

Coordinates: 45°34′00″N 5°55′16″E / 45.56667°N 5.92111°E / 45.56667; 5.92111
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Archdiocese of Chambéry, Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne, and Tarentaise

Archidioecesis Camberiensis, Maruianensis et Tarantasiensis

Archidiocèse de Chambéry, Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne et Tarentaise
Ecclesiastical provinceLyon
MetropolitanArchdiocese of Lyon
Area7,460 km2 (2,880 sq mi)
- Total
- Catholics
(as of 2013)
454,000 (est.)
399,425 (92.1%)
DenominationRoman Catholic
Sui iuris churchLatin Church
RiteRoman Rite
EstablishedUnited: 26 April 1966
CathedralCathedral Basilica of St. Francis de Sales in Chambéry
Co-cathedralCo-Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne
Co-Cathedral of St. Peter in Moûtiers
Patron saintSaint Francis de Sales
Saint John the Baptist
Saint Peter and Saint Paul
Secular priests75 Decrease
40 (Religious Orders) Increase
30 Permanent Deacons Increase
Current leadership
ArchbishopThibault Verny
Metropolitan ArchbishopOlivier de Germay
Website of the Archdiocese

The Archdiocese of Chambéry, Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne, and Tarentaise (Latin: Archidioecesis Camberiensis, Maruianensis et Tarantasiensis; French: Archidiocèse de Chambéry, Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne et Tarentaise) is a Latin Church archdiocese of the Catholic Church in France and a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Lyon. The archepiscopal see is Chambéry Cathedral, located in the city of Chambéry. The archdiocese encompasses the department of Savoie, in the Region of Rhône-Alpes.

The diocese was created in 1779, from the Diocese of Grenoble, after a complicated earlier history. It became an archdiocese in 1817, though at that point it was not within French territory.



In 1467, Pope Paul II erected a chapter of canons in the ducal chapel in the Chateau de Chambéry,[1] built for the relic which became known as the Shroud of Turin (Santo Sudario) by Amadeus IX of Savoy,[2] and the Duchess Yolande of France,[3] The Chapter of twelve canons, headed by a dean, a cantor, and a treasurer, was directly subject to the Holy See. Pope Paul's successor Pope Sixtus IV, on 21 May 1474, issued a bull, "Ex supernae providentia", which assigned the territory of the deanery of Savoy in the diocese of Grenoble to the Chapter of the chapel of the chateau. He also created a new dignity in the Chapter, that of the archdeacon.[4]

The purported relic known as the Holy Shroud of Christ was kept at Chambéry until 1598, in which year Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy, had it transported to Turin, where St. Charles Borromeo wished to venerate it.

On 6 June 1515, Pope Leo X published a papal bull making the deanery an archbishopric, and giving Duke Charles of Savoy the right to nominate the archbishop, subject to papal approval.[5] But Francis I of France, the Archbishop of Lyon, and the Bishop of Grenoble all objected, and on 22 September 1516, Pope Leo was obliged to cancel the establishment of Chambéry as an archdiocese.[6] It was only in 1775 that this deanery was separated from the Diocese of Grenoble by Pope Pius VI, who, in 1779, created it a bishopric with the see at Chambéry.[7]

Co-Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne

The Duchy of Savoy, whose sovereign was also the King of Sardinia, had thenceforth four bishoprics: Chambéry, the diocese of Saint-Jean de Maurienne, the diocese of Tarentaise, and Geneva (whose bishop, excluded from the city of Geneva by the Protestants, resided in the city of Annecy.[8]

French Revolution


In October, 1792, the commissaries to the Convention formed the constitutional Diocese of Mont-Blanc, with Annecy as the see and Lyons as the metropolitan. The four Savoyard dioceses were suppressed. The election of a new constitutional bishop was ordered.[9] On 8 February 1793, they published a proclamation concerning the religious affairs of the constitutional diocese, which was in fact the local application of the provisions of the Civil Constitution of the Clergy of 1789. Each member of the clergy was required to swear an oath to the Constitution or be deported from French territory; an exception was made for clerics over sixty years of age. Bishop Conseil refused the oath. He was 77, and therefore escaped deportation, but was placed under house arrest in his episcopal palace, where he died on 29 September 1793.[10] Unaware of the bishop's death, Pope Pius VI wrote a letter on 5 October 1793, commiserating with and encouraging the cathedral Chapter of Chambéry in their sufferings, and warnihg them of the dangers of schism.[11]

Under severe pressure from First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte,[12] Pope Pius VII issued the bull "Qui Christi Domini vices" on 29 November 1801. The bull first abolished all the metropolitan archdioces and dioceses in France, and then recreated fifty of them, arranged in ten metropolitan ecclesiastical districts; the others were suppressed. In the metropolitanate of Lyon, the pope created suffragan dioceses of Mende, Grenoble, Valence, and Chambéry.[13]

The Concordat of 1802 created a Diocese of Chambéry, and suppressed the Diocese of Geneva, annexing its territory to the new Diocese of Chambéry.[14] Chambéry was made a suffragan of the archdiocese of Lyons.[15]



The Bull "Beati Petri," signed by Pope Pius VII on 17 July 1817, made Chambéry, which had been assigned to the Kingdom of Sardinia (1720–1861) by the Congress of Vienna, the seat of an archdiocese, with the diocese of Aosta as a suffragan.[16]

The canton of Geneva had also been declared independent of France, and had allied itself with several Swiss cantons. On 20 September 1819, Pope Pius VII signed the bull "Inter Multiplices", which removed the territory of the former diocese of Geneva and assigned it to the diocese of Lausanne. The title of "Bishop of Geneva", however, remained with the archbishops of Chambéry.[17]

Bishop Alexis Billiet (1840–1873) held a diocesan synod in the chapel of the seminary on 20–22 September 1841. Its constitutions were published,[18]

Co-Cathedral of St. Peter in Moûtiers

The Dioceses of Annecy (re-established in 1822), Saint-Jean-Maurienne, and Tarentaise (in 1825), soon also became suffragans of Chambéry.

In 1860, the French Empire and the Kingdom of Sardinia (Piedmont) agreed to allow France to annex the duchy of Savoy, including Chambéry, St.Jean de Maurienne, Annecy, Tarentaise, and Nice.[19] This created an anomaly, from the point of view of national governments, that the Diocese of Aosta in the Kingdom of Sardinia had been a suffragan of the archbishop of Chambéry, in France, since 1819. Napoleon III therefore petitioned Pope Pius IX to adjust the borders of dioceses and ecclesiastical provinces, making Aosta a suffragan of the archdiocese of Turin. The pope did so, with bad grace,[20] on 1 December 1862.[21]

On 26 April 1966, Pope Paul VI issued the apostolic constitution "Animorum Bonum", in which he combined the dioceses of Maurienne and Tarantaise with the archdiocese of Chambéry, aeque personaliter; each diocese maintained its individual and distinct existence, but the archbishop was the bishop of all three dioceses at the same time. This was intended to be a permanent arrangement.[22]

In June 2002, the synodial assembly authorized the regrouping of 360 parishes into 47 "ensembles paroissiaux."[23]

On 16 December 2002 the Archdiocese of Chambéry became a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Lyon and ceased to be a Metropolitan archbishopric.[citation needed]

Religious Institutions


The Cistercian Abbey of Hautecombe, founded in 1135, is one of the burial places of the House of Savoy.[24] The church of Notre-Dame de Myans (antedating the twelfth century),[25] where Francis de Sales officiated; and Notre-Dame de l'Aumone at Rumilly (thirteenth century), whither Francis I of France went as a pilgrim, are still places of pilgrimage.

The Sisters of St. Joseph, an order devoted to teaching and charitable work, established a house, which became a mother-house, at Chambéry in 1812.[26]





See also



  1. ^ Ulysse Chevalier, Le Saint-Suaire de Turin: histoire d'une relique, (in French), (Paris: Ed. de l'art et l'autel, 1902), p. 17: "Cette pièce , dont on a le texte complet d'après les archives de Turin , est absolument muette à l'égard du saint Suaire ." Complete Latin text in de Jussieu, pp. 161-167.
  2. ^ Laurent Ripart, "Le Saint Suaire, les Savoie et Chambéry (1453–1515)," (in French), in: Cozzo, Paolo; Merlotti, Andrea' Nicolotti, The Shroud at Court. History, Usages, Places and Images of a Dynastic Relic, (Leiden-Boston: E.J. Brill, 2019), pp. 57-74.
  3. ^ Laura Gaffuri, "The First Exhibitions of the Shroud in Piedmont and Yolande of Valois," in: Cozzo & Merlotti, The Shroud at Court. History, Usages, Places and Images of a Dynastic Relic, pp. 89–103.
  4. ^ Chevalier, p. 17: "Rien non plus de l'insigne relique dans les bulles de Sixte IV des 15 septembre et 1er octobre 1472 et du 21 mai 1474, qui concernent les dignités de la nouvelle fondation." Hauréau, Gallia christiana XVI, p. 218. The bull of 1472, "Praevalens auctoritas", is printed by de Jussieu, pp. 168-171.. The bull "Ex supernae providentia" is printed by de Jussieu, pp. 176-184.
  5. ^ De Jussieu, pp. 222-225.
  6. ^ De Jussieu, pp. 225-229.
  7. ^ Pius VI, bull "Universa Dominici Gregis", 17 August 1779, in: Bullarii Romani Continuatio, (in Latin), Vol. 6 (Rome: Typographia Reverendae Camerae Apostolicae 1843), pp. 129-135.
  8. ^ The diocese of Annecy was not established until 1822.
  9. ^ Paul Pisani, Répertoire biographique de l'épiscopat constitutionnel (1791-1802), (in French), (Paris: A. Picard 1907), pp. 306-310.
  10. ^ Billiet, pp. 53-55.
  11. ^ Augustin Theiner, Documents inédits relatifs aux affaires religieuses de la France, 1790 à 1800, (in French), Vol. 1 ((Paris: Didot 1857), pp. 202-203.
  12. ^ Pius VII, Bullarii Romani continuatio, (in Latin), Tomus decimus primus (Volume 11), (Rome: ex typographia Reverendae Camerae Apostolicae, 1849), pp. 245-249, at p. 245 § 2 "Hae fuerunt causae, quae Nos superioribus mensibus conventionem inter hanc apostolicam Sedem, et primum consulem reipublicae Gallicanae ineundamm impulerunt, eae eaedem cogunt nunc ad coetera illa progredi...."
  13. ^ Bullarii Romani continuatio,, pp. 245-249, at p. 247 § 8: "ecclesiam archiepiscopalem Lugdunensem, et ecclesias episcopales Mimatensem, Grationopolitanam, Vanentinensem, et Camberiensem, quas ei in suffraganeas assignamus...." Karmin, p. 7.
  14. ^ J. M. Lavanchy (1894), Le diocèse de Genève (partie de Savoie) pendant la Révolution française, (in French), Volume II, pp. 263-272. Pius VII, bull "Qui Christi Domini," in: Bullarii Romani Continuatio Volume XI (Rome: Camera Apostolica 1846), pp. 245-249, § 6.
  15. ^ Billiet, Mémoires pour servir à l'histoire ecclésiastique du diocèse de Chambéry, pp. 385-388.
  16. ^ Bullarii Romani continuatio, (in Latin), Tomus decimus quartus (Volume 14), (Rome: ex typographia Reverendae Camerae Apostolicae, 1849), pp. 356-357, § 36.
  17. ^ Karmin, pp. 19, 256-263.
  18. ^ Alexis Billiet, Constitutions et instructions synodales du diocèse de Chambéry: publiées au synode tenu dans la chapelle du Séminaire de Chambéry, les 20, 21 et 22 septembre 1841, (in French), Chambéry: Puthold 1842.
  19. ^ Patrick Keyes O'Clery, The Making of Italy, 1856-1870 (London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner, 1892), pp. 112-117.
  20. ^ "Nos propterea qui Catholicae Ecclesiae prosperitatem, ac christianae plebis tranquillitatem Apostolica sollicitudine procurantes juxta temporum necessitatem et aetatum considerationem immutare haud detrectamus quae ad dioeceseum aptius conformanda limina pro faciliori illarum regimine et gubernio in Domino expedire deprehendimus...." The pope's tenuous grip on the papal states was being supported with French troops, while it was being assailed by Piedmontese troops and Garibaldi. James MacCaffrey, History of the Catholic Church in the Nineteenth Century (1789-1908) (Dublin: M.H. Gill and Son, 1909), pp. 425-430.
  21. ^ Bulletin des lois de l'Empire. (in French and Latin), Partie principale, Volume 27 (Paris: Imprimerie nationale, 1864), pp. 211-218. (Latin text of the bull, with French translation)
  22. ^ Acta Apostolicae Sedis (in Latin) Vol. 58 (Città del Vaticano 1966), pp. 625-626: "Maurianensem et Tarantasiensem dioeceses archidioecesi Chamberiensi aeque principaliter unimus, ita scilicet ut unus idemque Antistes tribus praesit Ecclesiis sitque simul Archiepiscopus Chamberiensis atque Episcopus Maurianensis et Tarantasiensis. Hac vero ratione, minime exstinctio dioecesibus, unaquaeque Ecclesia suum habebit cathedrale templum Canonicorumque collegium, et in consilio archidioecesano partem habebit gravitati consentaneam ad negotia quod attinet uniuscuiusque dioecesis propria...."
  23. ^ Archdiocese de Chambéry, "Un peu d'histoire;" retrieved: 18 April 2024.
  24. ^ Claudius Blanchard, Histoire de l'abbaye d'Hautecombe en Savoie, (in French), (Chambéry: F. Puthod, 1875).
  25. ^ Notre-Dame de Myans (Diocèse de Chambéry.), (in French), Chambéry: Puthod 1856, pp. 1-11.
  26. ^ Leon Bouchage, Chroniques de la Congregation des Soeurs de Saint-Joseph de Chambéry, (in French) (Chambéry: Imprimerie générale Savoisienne 1911) [Mémoires de l'Académie des sciences, belles-lettres et arts de Savoie 4e série, Tome 12], pp. 163-186.
  27. ^ Conseil was appointed in the papal consistory of 20 March 1780. He died a prisoner of the French revolution on 29 September 1793. Ritzler & Sefrin Hierarchia catholica VI, p. 162 with note 2.
  28. ^ Mérinville was nominated Bishop of Dijon by King Louis XVI on 25 February 1787, and confirmed by Pope Pius VI on 23 April 1787. He was nominated bishop of Chambery by First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte on 12 April 1802, and confirmed by Pope Pius VII on 4 May 1802. He resigned in January 1805, for reasons of health. Billiet, pp. 387-414. Ritzler & Sefrin VI, p. 198; VII, p. 147.
  29. ^ Desolle (also spelled De Solle and Dessole) was bishop of Digne from 1802 to 1805. He was transferred to the diocese of Chambéry by consular decree on 28 January 1802, and preconised (approved) by Pope Pius VII on 22 March. He was summoned to the Council of Paris in 1811 and attended; he made a proposal that a delegation approach the emperor at Saint-Cloud and demand the release of the imprisoned Pius VII. His resignation from the archdiocese on the grounds of ill health was announced on 26 November 1823. He retired to Paris, where he died on 30 December 1824. Honoré Fisquet, La France pontificale (Gallia Christiana), Metropole d'Aix. Digne, (in French), (Paris: Repos 1864), pp. 142-144. Ritzler & Sefrin, Hierarchia catholica VII, pp. 147, 176.
  30. ^ Bishop Bigex had previously been bishop of Pinerolo from 1817 to 1824. Ritzler & Sefrin, Hierarchia catholica VII, pp. 147, 307.
  31. ^ Martinet had been bishop of Tarentaise from 1825 to 1828. Louis Rendu. Oraison funèbre de Monseigneur Antoine Martinet, prononcée dans la métropole de Chambéry le 12 juin 1839, (in French) (Chambéry: Puthod, imprimeur et libraire du clergé, 1839). Ritzler & Sefrin VII, pp. 148, 358.
  32. ^ Billiet had been bishop of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne from 1825 to 1840. He was made a cardinal by Pope Pius IX in 1861. Bräuer, Martin (2014). Handbuch der Kardinäle: 1846-2012 (in German). Berlin: De Gruyter. p. 61. ISBN 978-3-11-026947-5.
  33. ^ Pichenot had previously been bishop of Tarbes (1870–1873). He was appointed archbishop of Chambéry on 25 July 1873 by Pope Pius IX. He died on 5 October 1880. Le Carmel de Chambéry, pp. 211-212. Ritzler & Sefrin, Hierarchia catholica VIII, pp. 198, 535.
  34. ^ Leuillieux had previously been bishop of Carcassonne. Le Carmel de Chambéry, pp. 212-213. Ritzler & Sefrin, Hierarchia catholica VIII, pp. 181, 198.
  35. ^ Hautin had previously been bishop of Évreux (1890–1893). Jérusalem (in French), Vol. 2 (Paris 1906–1907), pp. 338-339.
  36. ^ Pélacot had previously bewen bishop of Troyes (1898–1907). Charles-François Druon, Le Concile du Puy, tenu en octobre 1873: simples notes, (in French), (Paris: Librairie de Victor Palmé, 1875), pp. 255-256. Ritzler & Sefrin, Hierarchia catholica VIII, p. 563.
  37. ^ Dubillard had previously been bishop of Quimper-Cornouailles (1899−1907). He was appointed archbishop of Chambéry on 16 December 1907 by Pope Pius X. He was appointed a cardinal on 27 November 1911. He died on 1 December 1914. Ritzler & Sefrin, Hierarchia catholica VIII, p. 227. Bräuer, Martin (2014). Handbuch der Kardinäle: 1846-2012 (in German). Berlin: De Gruyter. p. 217. ISBN 978-3-11-026947-5.
  38. ^ , also bishop of Digne
  39. ^ , also bishop of Viviers
  40. ^ Bazelaire de Ruppierre attended the Second Vatican Council, and was on the preparatory committee for a document on seminaries. The International Who's Who (Europa Publications Limited, 1962), p. 69.
  41. ^ Bontemps was previously bishop of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne.
  42. ^ Archbishop Feidt was transferred to the archdiocese of Aix.
  43. ^ Ulrich was appointed archbishop of Lille on 1 February 2008.
  44. ^ Ballot was appointed archbishop of Chambéry by Pope Benedict XVI on 14 January 2009. He was transferred to the diocese of Metz on 23 July 2022, and allowed to retain the personal title of archbishop.
  45. ^ Verney was appointed on 11 May 2023 by Pope Francis. Archdiocese de Chambery, "Mgr Thibault Verny, archevêque de Chambéry, évêque de Maurienne et de Tarentaise;" retrieved: 18 April 2024.



Reference works



  • Goyau, Georges. "Chambéry (Camberium)." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 3. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908. Accessed 23 February 2024.

45°34′00″N 5°55′16″E / 45.56667°N 5.92111°E / 45.56667; 5.92111