Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown

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Diocese of Allentown
Dioecesis Alanpolitana
Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown.svg
The coat of arms of the Diocese of Allentown
Country United States
Territory Pennsylvania counties of Berks, Carbon, Lehigh, Northampton and Schuylkill, in the United States
Ecclesiastical province Archdiocese of Philadelphia
Area 2,773 sq mi (7,180 km2)
- Total
- Catholics
(as of 2015)
258,997 (20.4%%)
Parishes 89
Denomination Roman Catholic
Rite Roman Rite
Established January 28, 1961
Cathedral Cathedral of Saint Catharine of Siena
Patron saint Saint Catherine of Siena
Secular priests 210
Current leadership
Pope Francis
Bishop John Oliver Barres
Bishop of Allentown
Metropolitan Archbishop Charles Joseph Chaput, OFM Cap
Archbishop of Philadelphia
Vicar General Alfred Schlert, V.G.
Emeritus Bishops Edward Peter Cullen
Diocese of Allentown map 1.jpg

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown (Latin: Dioecesis Alanpolitana) is a Roman Catholic diocese comprising the Pennsylvania counties of Berks, Carbon, Lehigh, Northampton and Schuylkill, in the United States. Its cathedral is the Cathedral Church of Saint Catharine of Siena, located in Allentown, Pennsylvania. The diocese has a Catholic population of 258,997 as of 2015, approximately 20.4% of the total population; it maintains 89 parishes, 34 Catholic elementary schools, 6 Catholic high schools and two Catholic colleges, as well as 244 priests (active, retired & religious).


The diocese was founded on January 28, 1961 by Pope John XXIII by splitting the Archdiocese of Philadelphia; the first bishop, Joseph Mark McShea, was installed on April 11 of that year.


The bishops of the diocese and their years of service:

  1. Joseph Mark McShea (1961–1983)
  2. Thomas Jerome Welsh (1983–1997)
  3. Edward Peter Cullen (1998–2009)
  4. John Oliver Barres (2009–Present)

Priests who became bishops[edit]

  • David B. Thompson Ordained for the archdiocese of Philadelphia; chancellor of the then-new Allentown diocese; became Bishop of Charleston (South Carolina).

Diocese today[edit]

Cathedral of Saint Catharine of Siena

The Vicar General of the Diocese is the Reverend Monsignor Alfred A. Schlert, J.C.L., V.G. The Judicial Vicar of the Diocese is the Very Rev. John J. Paul, V.J., M.S.C., S.T.L., J.C.D.

In 2008, the Diocese of Allentown underwent a major restructuring of parishes. Declining Mass attendance, shift in population, and waning number of priestly vocations all led to these changes. Much of the Northeastern United States is experiencing these factors.

Deaneries & Vicars Forane[edit]

  • Schuylkill Deanery: The Reverend Monsignor William J. Glosser, V.F.
  • Berks Deanery: The Reverend Monsignor Dennis T. Hartgen, V.F.
  • Carbon Deanery: The Reverend Monsignor John G. Chizmar, V.F.
  • Lehigh Deanery: The Reverend Monsignor Daniel J. Yenushosky, V.F.
  • Northampton Deanery: The Reverend Monsignor Stephen J. Radocha,V.F.

Parishes (As of 2015)[edit]

A cross (+) indicates a new parish formed from the merger or consolidation of two or more parishes.

Carbon Deanery[edit]

  • St. Joseph, Summit Hill
  • +St. Katherine Drexel, Lansford
  • +St. Francis of Assisi, Nesquehoning
  • +Our Lady of Lourdes, Weatherly
  • Immaculate Conception, Jim Thorpe
  • St. Joseph, Jim Thorpe
  • St. Peter the Fisherman, Lake Harmony
  • Ss. Peter and Paul, Lehighton
  • Sacred Heart, Palmerton

Lehigh Deanery[edit]

  • Cathedral of Saint Catharine of Siena, Allentown
  • St. Francis of Assisi, Allentown
  • St. Paul, Allentown
  • Sacred Heart, Allentown
  • St. Stephen of Hungary, Allentown
  • Our Lady, Help of Christians, Allentown
  • Immaculate Conception, Allentown
  • St. John the Baptist, Allentown
  • Ss. Peter and Paul, Allentown
  • St. Thomas More, Allentown
  • St. Joseph the Worker, Orefield
  • St. Ann, Emmaus
  • +Queenship of Mary, Northampton
  • Assumption BVM, Northampton
  • +St. John Neumann, Catasauqua
  • Assumption BVM, Slatington
  • St. Peter, Coplay
  • St. John the Baptist, Whitehall
  • Holy Trinity, Whitehall
  • St. Elizabeth of Hungary, Whitehall

Northampton Deanery[edit]

  • Sacred Heart, Bath
  • Holy Family, Nazareth
  • St. Nicholas, Berlinsville
  • St. Elizabeth of Hungary, Pen Argyl
  • Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, Roseto
  • Our Lady of Good Counsel, Bangor
  • St. Rocco, Martins Creek
  • +Incarnation of our Lord, Bethlehem
  • Holy Ghost, Bethlehem
  • Holy Infancy, Bethlehem
  • St. Ursula, Fountain Hill
  • +Our Lady of Mercy, Easton
  • St. Anthony of Padua, Easton
  • Saint Joseph, Limeport
  • Assumption BVM, Colesville
  • Notre Dame, Bethlehem
  • Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Bethlehem Township
  • Sacred Heart, Bethlehem Township
  • Saint Anne, Bethlehem
  • Saint Theresa, Hellertown
  • Saint Jane Frances de Chantal, Palmer Township
  • Saints Simon and Jude, Bethlehem

Berks Deanery[edit]

  • Saint Joseph, Reading
  • Saint Peter the Apostle, Reading
  • Saint Margaret, Reading
  • Saint Paul, Reading
  • Holy Guardian Angels, Muhlenberg Township
  • Saint Mary, Kutztown
  • Saint Mary, Hamburg
  • Saints Cyril and Methodius, Reading
  • Saint Mary, Reading
  • Holy Rosary, Reading
  • Sacred Heart, West Reading
  • Saint Ignatius Loyola, Whitfield
  • Saint Francis de Sales, Robesonia
  • Saint John Baptist de La Salle, Shillington
  • Saint Benedict, Mohnton
  • Saint Catherine of Siena, Mt. Penn (Chapel)/Exeter Township
  • Immaculate Conception, Douglasville
  • Saint Columbkill, Boyertown
  • Most Blessed Sacrament, Bally

Schuylkill Deanery[edit]

  • St. John XXIII, Tamaqua
  • +All Saints, McAdoo
  • +Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, Mahanoy City
  • Divine Mercy Parish, Shenandoah
  • Saint Joseph, Sheppton
  • Saint Mary, Ringtown
  • St. Charles Borromeo, Ashland
  • Saint Ann, Frackville
  • Saint Joseph, Frackville
  • St. Patrick, Pottsville
  • St. John the Baptist, Pottsville
  • St. Ambrose, Schuylkill Haven
  • St. Stephen, Port Carbon
  • +St. Michael the Archangel, Minersville
  • +St. Matthew, Minersville
  • +St. Clare of Assisi, St. Clair
  • +Holy Cross, New Philadelphia
  • +Most Blessed Trinity, Tremont

High schools[edit]

Higher Education[edit]

See also[edit]


[better source needed]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°36′06″N 75°28′38″W / 40.60167°N 75.47722°W / 40.60167; -75.47722