Roman Catholic Diocese of San Jose in California

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Diocese of San José in California

Diœcesis Sancti Josephi in California

Diócesis de San José en California
Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph
CoA Roman Catholic Diocese of San Jose in California.svg
Coat of arms
Country United States
TerritoryCounty of Santa Clara
Ecclesiastical provinceSan Francisco
Headquarters1150 N. First St., San Jose CA 95112
- Total
- Catholics (including non-members)
(as of 2017)
633,000 (33.0[1]%)
Parishes52 (including missions)
Sui iuris churchLatin Church
RiteRoman Rite
EstablishedJanuary 27, 1981
CathedralCathedral Basilica of St. Joseph
Co-cathedralSaint Patrick Proto-Cathedral
Patron saintSaint Joseph
Saint Clare of Assisi
Current leadership
BishopOscar Cantú
Metropolitan ArchbishopSalvatore Cordileone
Vicar General
  • Rev. Msgr. Francis V. Cilia
    Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia
  • Very Rev. Brendan McGuire
    Vicar General – Special Projects
Bishops emeritus
Diocese of San Jose in California map 1.png

The Roman Catholic Diocese of San José in California (Latin: Diœcesis Sancti Josephi in California; Spanish: Diócesis de San José en California) is an ecclesiastical territory or diocese of the Roman Catholic Church in the northern California region of the United States. It comprises Santa Clara County, and is led by a bishop. Its patron saints are Saint Joseph and Saint Clare of Assisi. The diocese is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of San Francisco. Its fellow suffragans include the Dioceses of Honolulu, Las Vegas, Oakland, Reno, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, Santa Rosa and Stockton.

The Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph in Downtown San Jose is the cathedral church of the diocese. The diocesan offices are located at 1150 North First Street. The diocese serves over 600,000 Catholics in 52 parishes and missions, three university campus ministries, and 38 schools.[citation needed]


Carmelite Convent of the Infant Jesus, founded in 1917.

The Roman Catholic Church in present-day Santa Clara County dates to the founding of Mission Santa Clara de Asís (a Spanish mission) in 1777, during the era of the Provincias Internas of New Spain. Originally a part of the Diocese of Sonora in Mexico, in 1840 San Jose and the rest of the Californias became part of the Diocese of Alta and Baja California, headquartered in Santa Barbara.

In 1850, two years after the Mexican Cession, the Diocese of Alta and Baja California was split between the American and Mexican territories, and San Jose became a part of the Diocese of Monterey. In 1853, the northern half of the county became part of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, while the areas around Gilroy and Morgan Hill remained in the Diocese of Monterey. In 1922 the American Catholic Church decided to use county boundaries for dioceses,[citation needed] and the southern half of the county was transferred to the Archdiocese of San Francisco.

Pope John Paul II granted the See of San Jose independence on January 27, 1981;[citation needed] the diocese was canonically erected later that year by archbishops Pio Laghi, Apostolic Delegate to the United States, and John R. Quinn, Metropolitan Archbishop of San Francisco, on March 18, the vigil of the feast of Saint Joseph. The first Bishop of San Jose was Pierre DuMaine, and the first cathedral of the diocese was Saint Patrick Proto-Cathedral Parish.

The 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake damaged St. Joseph's Cathedral, resulting in the need for $22 million in repairs;[2] it also damaged Saint Joseph's Seminary of Mountain View, resulting in the death of someone working in the tower.[3] St. Joseph's, a Sulpician seminary at one time affiliated with Saint Patrick Seminary,[4] was subsequently closed and demolished, with the intent to sell part of the land to build luxury homes and use the proceeds to repay a $20 million loan used to repair the cathedral.[5] As part of the deal with the Cupertino City Council, 138 acres (0.56 km2) were donated to the county park system, to be added to Rancho San Antonio County Park.[2]

Reports of sex abuse[edit]

On October 18, 2018, the Diocese of San Jose released the names of 15 former priests who served the Diocese and were "credibly accused" of sexual abuse. It was also reported that the Diocese knew about the allegations against these priests and shielded them from potential prosecution.[6] From May to December 2019, the Diocese of San Jose provided numerous documents to California State Attorney Xavier Becerra in preparation for a series of pending lawsuits which are expected to be filed after a new California law which will temporarily remove the statute of limitations goes into effect on January 1, 2020.[7][8] The Diocese of San Jose is one of six Catholic dioceses throughout the state of California which is expected to be subpoenaed in the upcoming lawsuits.[7][8]


The bishops who served in this diocese and their tenures of service:

Bishops of San José in California[edit]

  1. Pierre DuMaine (January 27, 1981 – November 27, 1999)
  2. Patrick Joseph McGrath (November 27, 1999 – May 1, 2019)
  3. Oscar Cantú (May 1, 2019–present)

Coadjutor Bishops[edit]

Auxiliary Bishop[edit]

Other priest of this diocese who became Bishop[edit]

  • Richard John Garcia, appointed auxiliary bishop of Sacramento in 1997 and later appointed Bishop of Monterey in 2006


Notre Dame High School in Downtown San Jose, founded in 1850, is the oldest high school in California (tied with Bellarmine College Prep).

In terms of student population, the diocese is the second largest education provider in the county, trailing only San Jose Unified School District.[citation needed] Most of the primary schools are parochial, or operated by a parish, while all the high schools are operated by either the diocese or by a religious institute. Santa Clara University is a Jesuit-run university at the site of Mission Santa Clara.

Primary schools[edit]

High schools[edit]

Former high schools:


Sacred Heart Church in the Washington-Guadalupe neighborhood.
Saint Mary Church in Gilroy.


Campbell (1)
Saint Lucy Parish
Cupertino (1)
Saint Joseph of Cupertino Parish
Gilroy (1)
Saint Mary Parish
Los Altos (3)
Saint Nicholas Parish
Saint Simon Parish
Saint William Parish
Los Gatos (1)
Saint Mary of the Immaculate Conception Parish
Milpitas (2)
Saint Elizabeth Parish
Saint John the Baptist Parish
Morgan Hill (1)
Saint Catherine of Alexandria Parish
Mountain View (2)
Saint Athanasius Parish
Saint Joseph Parish
Palo Alto (1)
Saint Thomas Aquinas Parish
San Jose (29)
Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph
Christ the King Parish
Church of the Transfiguration
Five Wounds Portuguese National Parish
Holy Cross Parish
Holy Family Parish
Holy Korean Martyrs Parish
Holy Spirit Parish
Most Holy Trinity Parish
Oratory of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (at Five Wounds Portuguese National Parish)
Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish
Our Lady of La Vang Parish (formerly Saint Patrick Proto-Cathedral Parish)
Our Lady of Refuge
Our Lady Star of the Sea Parish
Queen of Apostles Parish
Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish
Saint Anthony Parish
Saint Brother Albert Chmielowski Polish Mission
Saint Christopher Parish
Saint Frances Cabrini Parish
Saint Francis of Assisi Parish
Saint John Vianney Parish
Saint Julie Billiart Parish
Saint Leo the Great Parish
Saint Maria Goretti Parish
Saint Martin of Tours Parish
Saint Mary of the Assumption Croatian Mission
Saint Thomas of Canterbury Parish
Saint Victor Parish
Santa Teresa Parish
Santa Clara (7)
Chinese Catholic Mission
Mission Santa Clara (distinct from Saint Clare Parish, located across the street)
Our Lady of Peace Parish (sponsored by the Institute of the Incarnate Word)
Saint Clare Parish
Saint Justin Parish
Saint Lawrence the Martyr Parish
Saratoga (2)
Church of the Ascension
Sacred Heart Church
Stanford (1)
Catholic Community at Stanford
Sunnyvale (3)
Church of the Resurrection
Saint Cyprian Parish
Saint Martin Parish


Coat of arms of Roman Catholic Diocese of San Jose in California
CoA Roman Catholic Diocese of San Jose in California.svg
Arms was designed and adopted when the diocese was erected
The diocesan arms consists of Triple mountains, a diagonal band of Latin crosses, Rose and a carpenter's set squares
The Coat of Arms of the Diocese of San Jose displays symbols showing California roots, the Santa Clara Valley and the City of San Jose; a diagonal band of Latin crosses represents the missionary tradition of the area (21 California Missions) of which Santa Clara de Asis (1777) is one. Symbols also represent the Archdiocese of San Francisco from which the Diocese of San Jose was founded in 1981; the rose, emblem of Mary (Our Lady of Guadalupe); a carpenter's square represents the diocese's patron, St. Joseph; and mountains represent the Santa Clara Valley.


The diocese publishes a trilingual newspaper, The Valley Catholic.

See also[edit]


Specific references:

  1. ^ "San Jose in California (Diocese) [Catholic-Hierarchy]". Retrieved Apr 5, 2021.
  2. ^ a b Diocese Expected to Seal St. Joseph's Land Deal / Parkland and homes slated for Cupertino site, a July 8, 1998 article from the San Francisco Chronicle
  3. ^ ID. Wilshire, H.G. 12ct from the U.S. Geological Survey Photographic Library
  4. ^ Our History from the Saint Joseph's College Alumni Association
  5. ^ Diocese Gets OK to Build 178 Homes in Cupertino, an August 2, 1995 article from the San Francisco Chronicle
  6. ^ Veklerov, Kimberly; McBride, Ashley (Oct 19, 2018). "San Jose bishop names 15 priests accused of child sex abuse". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved Apr 5, 2021.
  7. ^ a b "Half of California's Catholic Dioceses to Be Subpoenaed in Priest Abuse Inquiry". Dec 10, 2019. Retrieved Apr 5, 2021.
  8. ^ a b "California: half of Catholic dioceses expect subpoenas over sexual abuse". the Guardian. Dec 11, 2019. Retrieved Apr 5, 2021.
  9. ^ "Pope appoints New Mexico bishop as coadjutor for San Jose". National Catholic Reporter. Catholic News Service. July 11, 2018. Retrieved July 14, 2018.

General references:

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°18′07″N 121°52′31″W / 37.30194°N 121.87528°W / 37.30194; -121.87528