Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chihuahua

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Archdiocese of Chihuahua
Archidioecesis Chihuahuensis
Arquidiócesis de Chihuahua
Catedral Metropolitana
Country  Mexico
Ecclesiastical province Province of Chihuahua
Metropolitan Chihuahua, Chihuahua
Area 28,565 sq mi (73,980 km2)
- Total
- Catholics
(as of 2006)
1,176,000 (89%)
Parishes 59
Denomination Roman Catholic
Rite Roman Rite
Established 23 June 1891 (127 years ago)
Cathedral Metropolitan Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Our Lady of Regla and St. Francis of Assisi
Current leadership
Pope Francis
Metropolitan Archbishop Constancio Miranda Weckmann
Archidiócesis de Chihuahua.svg

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chihuahua[1][1] (Latin: Archidioecesis Chihuahuensis) is a diocese of the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church in Mexico.

Early history[edit]

Erected in 1891 from the Diocese of Durango,[2] the diocese consisted of the State of Chihuahua in its entirety. The Durango Diocese had been erected in 1620 as the diocese for the entire northern area of New Spain and is considered a mother diocese-Sonora[2], St Louis[3], New Mexico[4][5] and Chihuahua were formed from Durango as population expanded in the 18th and 19th centuries.


Because of the laws promulgated by the liberal government of President Benito Juárez, the Constitution of 1857 and the Mexican Revolution, which, taken together, had the effect of disenfranchising the Catholic clergy and large swaths of Catholic laity, studying for the priesthood became a difficult proposition for candidates in Chihuahua, and, indeed, in all of Mexico. Many of Chihuahuas priests were trained at the seminaries in El Paso, TX, Santa Fe, NM, and Phoenix, AZ. One of them, Fr. Pedro Maldonado was ordained in the Cathedral of El Paso in 1918, martyred in 1937, and canonised by Pope John Paul II in 2000 [6].


The diocese was elevated to the level of Archdiocese on 22 November 1958 by Bl. Pope John XXIII[7], and now is the metropolitan of the following suffragan dioceses within the Ecclesiastical Province of Chihuahua: Ciudad Juárez[8], Cuauhtémoc-Madera[9], Nuevo Casas Grandes[10], Parral[11] and Tarahumara[12]. All of these suffragan dioceses were formed from Chihuahua, and are located within the physical boundaries of the State of Chihuahua.

The archdiocese encompasses 73,956 square kilometers in the center of the state, and as of 2006, contained 1,176,000 Catholics, 59 parishes, 131 priests and 10 permanent deacons.[1] The archepiscopal see is the Metropolitan Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Our Lady of Regla, and St Francis of Assisi.

The Most Reverend Constancio Miranda Weckmann [13] was named by Pope Benedict XVI[14] as archbishop on 29 September 2009, and installed on 19 November 2009, succeeding the Most Reverend José Fernández Arteaga [15], who had retired. Fernández had been appointed archbishop by Bl. Pope John Paul II[16] in 1992; his predecessor, Don Adalberto Almeida y Merino[17], passed from this life on 21 June 2008, at the age of 92 at his home in Colonia Nombre de Dios, Chihuahua.



VIS news release[edit]

The text of the Vatican Information Service news release regarding the appointment of Archbishop Miranda, dated 29 September 2009, reads as follows:


VATICAN CITY, 29 SEP 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Bishop Constancio Miranda Weckmann of Atlacomulco, Mexico, as metropolitan archbishop of Chihuahua (area 73,956, population 1,351,777, Catholics 1,205,174, priests 136, permanent deacons 10, religious 226), Mexico. The archbishop-elect was born in Las Cruces, Mexico in 1952, he was ordained a priest in 1977 and consecrated a bishop in 1998. He succeeds Archbishop Jose Fernandez Arteaga, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.[25]



  1. ^ a b "Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chihuahua". David M. Cheney. Retrieved November 19, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Archdiocese of Durango". David M. Cheney. 

Coordinates: 28°38′09″N 106°04′37″W / 28.6359°N 106.0770°W / 28.6359; -106.0770