Roman Catholic Diocese of Porto, Portugal
|Diocese of Porto
Diocese do Porto
|Metropolitan||Archdiocese of Braga|
|Area||3,010 km2 (1,160 sq mi)|
|(as of 2013)
|Sui iuris church||Latin Church|
|Cathedral||Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady in Porto|
|Patron saint||Assumption of Mary|
|Bishop||António Francisco dos Santos|
|Metropolitan Archbishop||Jorge IV|
|Auxiliary Bishops||Pio de Souza
António Augusto de Oliveira Azevedo (Auxiliary Bishop-elect)
|Emeritus Bishops||João Miranda Teixeira Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus (1983-2011)|
|Website of the Diocese|
The Portuguese Roman Catholic Diocese of Porto (Latin: Dioecesis Portugallensis) (Oporto) is a suffragan of the archdiocese of Braga. Its see at Porto is in the Norte region, and the second largest city in Portugal.
The diocese was probably founded in the middle of the sixth century. At the third Council of Toledo (589) the Arian Argiovi was deposed in favour of bishop Constancio. In 610 Bishop Argeberto assisted at the Council of Toledo, summoned by King Gundemar to sanction the metropolitan claims of Toledo. Bishop Ansiulfo was present at the Sixth Council of Toledo (638) and Bishop Flavio at the Tenth (656).
Bishop Froarico attended the Third Council of Braga (675) and the Twelfth, Thirteenth, and Fifteenth Councils of Toledo (681, 683, and 688), and his successor Felix appeared at the Sixteenth Council (693). No other bishop is recorded under the Visigothic monarchy. After the Arab invasion Justus seems to have been the first bishop. Gomado was probably elected in 872, when King Affonso III won back the city. The names of only four other prelates have been preserved: Froarengo (906), Hermogio (912), Ordonho, and Diogo. Porto fell again into Moorish hands, and on its recovery, Hugo became bishop (1114-1134-6). He secured exemption from the Archbishop of Braga. He greatly enlarged his diocese and the cathedral patrimony increased by the donations he secured; thus, in 1120, he received from D. Theresa jurisdiction over the City of Porto with all the rents and dues thereof. John Peculiar was promoted to Braga (1138), his nephew, Pedro Rabaldis, succeeding at Porto. Next came D. Pedro Pitões (1145 to 1152 or 1155), D. Pedro Sénior (d. 1172), and D. Fernão Martins (d. 1185). Martinho Pires instituted a chapter, was promoted to Braga, 1189 or 1190. Martinho Rodrigues ruled from 1191 to 1235. He quarrelled with the chapter over their share of the rents of the see. Later on, fresh disagreements arose in which King Sancho I intervened against the bishop, who was deprived of his goods and had to flee, but was restored by the king when Innocent III espoused the bishop's cause. Another quarrel soon arouse between prelate and king, and the bishop was imprisoned; but he escaped and fled to Rome, and in 1209 the king, feeling the approach of death, made peace with him. His successor, Pedro Salvadores, figured prominently in the questions between the clergy and King Sancho II, who refused to ecclesiastics the right of purchasing or inheriting land. Portugal fell into anarchy, in which the clergy's rights were violated and their persons outraged, though they themselves were not guiltless. Finally, Pope Innocent IV committed the reform of abuses to Afonso III, brother of Sancho II, who lost his crown.
Under Bishop Julian (1247–60) the jurisdiction difficulty became aggravated. A settlement was effected at the Cortes of Leiria (1254), which the bishop refused to ratify, but he had to give way. When King Afonso III determined (1265) that all rights and properties usurped during the disorders of Sancho's reign should revert to the Crown, nearly all the bishops, including the Bishop of Porto, then D. Vicente, protested; and seven went to Rome for relief, leaving Portugal under an interdict. When the king was dying, in 1278, he promised restitution. Vicente (d. 1296) was one of the negotiators of the Concordat of 1289 and the supplementary Accord of Eleven Articles. He was succeeded by Sancho Pires, who ruled until 1300. Geraldo Domingues resigned in 1308 to act as counsellor of the King's daughter Constança, future Queen of Castile. Tredulo was bishop for two and a half years. The Minorite Frei Estêvão was succeeded in 1313 by his nephew Fernando Ramires. Both uncle and nephew quarrelled with King Denis and left the realm.
Owing to the hostility of the citizens, Bishop Gomes lived mostly outside his diocese. When Pedro Afonso became bishop in 1343, he had a quarrel over jurisdiction and, like his predecessor, departed, leaving the diocese under interdict. Six years later he returned, but again the monarch began to encroach, and it was not until 1354 that the bishop secured recognition of his rights. His successor was Afonso Pires. Egídio is probably the bishop represented in the old Chronicles as being threatened with scourging by King Pedro for having lived in sin with a citizen's wife The accusation was probably groundless, but Egídio left the city, which for twelve years had no bishop. In 1373 or 1375 John succeeded and supported the lawful popes in the Great Schism, and the John I of Portugal against Castilian claims.
Other bishops were: John de Zambuja, or Estêvão; and Gil, who in 1406 sold the episcopal rights over Oporto to the Crown for an annual money payment, reduced in the reign of D. Manuel to 120 silver marks; Fernando Guerra, who in 1425 was created Archbishop of Braga; Vasco. — Antão Martins de Chaves, who succeeded Vasco in 1430, was sent by the pope to Constantinople to induce the Greek emperor to attend the Council of Basle. He succeeded, and as a reward was made cardinal. He died in 1447. Succeeding incumbents were: Durando; Gonçalves de Óbidos; Luis Pires (1454–64), a negotiator of the Concordat of 1455 and a reforming prelate; João de Azevedo (1465–1494), a benefactor of the cathedral and chapter, as was his successor Diego de Sousa, afterwards Archbishop of Braga and executor of King Manuel I. The see was then held by two brothers in succession, Diogo da Costa (1505-7) and D. Pedro da Costa (1511–39), who restored the bishop's palace and enriched the capitular revenues from his own purse; Belchior Beliago; and the Carmelite Frei Baltazar Limpo (1538–52), the fiftieth bishop. He held a diocesan synod in 1540.
In the time of Rodrigo Pinheiro, a learned humanist, Porto was visited by St. Francis Borgia and the Jesuits established themselves in the city. Aires da Silva, ex-rector of Coimbra University, after ruling four years, fell in the battle of Alcácer Quibir in 1578 with King Sebastião. Simão Pereira was followed by the Franciscan Frei Marcos de Lisboa, chronicler of his order. He added to the cathedral and convoked a diocesan synod in 1585. In 1591 another ex-rector of Coimbra, Jerónimo de Menezes, became bishop; he was succeeded by the Benedictine Frei Gonçalo de Morais, a zealous defender of the rights of the Church. He built a new sacristy and chancel in the cathedral. In 1618 Bishop Rodrigo da Cunha, author of the history of the Bishops of Oporto, was appointed. His "Catalogo" describes the state of the cathedral and enumerates the parishes of the diocese with their population and income in 1623 and is the earliest account we possess. His successor was Frei João de Valadares, transferred from the See of Miranda. Gaspar do Rego da Fonseca, who held the see four years (1635–39). King Philip III named Francisco Pereira Pinto, but the revolution in 1640 prevented his taking possession, so that the see was considered vacant until 1671, being ruled by administrators appointed by the chapter. In 1641 King John IV chose D. Sebastião César de Menezes as bishop, but the pope, influenced by Spain, would neither recognize the new King of Portugal nor confirm his nominations. Next came Frei Pedro de Menezes; Nicolau Monteiro took possession in 1671, Fernando Correia de Lacerda, in 1673, who was succeeded by João de Sousa. Frei José Saldanha (1697–1708), famed for his austerity, never relinquished his Franciscan habit, a contrast to his successor Tomás de Almeida, who in 1716 became the first Patriarch of Lisbon. The see remained vacant until 1739, and, though Frei John Maria was then elected, he never obtained confirmation. In the same year Frei José Maria da Fonseca, formerly Commissary General of the Franciscans, became bishop. Several European States selected him as arbiter of their differences. He contributed to the canonization of a number of saints. He founded and restored many convents and hospitals.
Next in order were: Frei António de Távora (d. 1766), Frei Aleixo de Miranda Henriques, Frei João Rafael de Mendonça (1771-3), and Lourenço Correia de Sá Benevides (1796-8). Frei Antonio de Castro became Patriarch of Lisbon in 1814, being followed at Porto by João Avelar. Frei Manuel de Santa Inês, though elected, never obtained confirmation, but some years after his death, relations between Portugal and the Holy See were re-established by a concordat and Jerónimo da Costa Rebelo became bishop in 1843. From 1854 to 1859 the see was held by António da Fonseca Moniz; on his death it remained vacant until 1862, when João de Castro e Moura, who had been a missionary in China, was appointed (d.1868). The see was again vacant until the confirmation of Américo Ferreira dos Santos Silva in 1871. This prelate was obliged to combat the growing Liberalism of his flock and the Protestant propaganda in Porto A popular lawyer named Mesquita started a campaign against him, because the bishop refused to dismiss some priests, reputed reactionary, who served the Aguardente Chapel; getting himself elected judge of the Brotherhood of the Temple, he provoked a great platform agitation with the result that the chapel was secularized and became a school under the patronage of the Marquis of Pombal Association. In 1879 Américo was created cardinal and on his death the present (1911) Bishop, António Barroso, an ex-missionary, was transferred from the see of Mylapore to that of Porto.
Here is a list of the bishops of Porto since the establishment of the diocese in the 4th century. Bishops elevated to the rank of cardinal are shown bolded.
|#||Name||Date of Birth||Appointed||Retired||Date of Death|
|Vacant see (1091–1113)|
|13||Hugo||23 March 1113||7 December 1136||7 December 1136|
|14||João I Peculiar||1137||1138||3 December 1175|
|15||Pedro I Rabaldes||1138||1145|
|16||Pedro II Pitões||1146||1152|
|17||Pedro III Sénior||1154||1174|
|18||Fernando I Martins||1176||1185|
|19||Martinho I Pires||1186||1189|
|20||Martinho II Rodrigues||1191||1235|
|21||Pedro IV Salvadores||1235||24 June 1247||24 June 1247|
|22||Julião Fernandes||1247||31 October 1260||31 October 1260|
|23||Vicente Mendes||1261||23 April 1296||23 April 1296|
|24||Sancho Pires||3 June 1296||7 January 1300||7 January 1300|
|25||Geraldo Domingues||19 March 1300||4 December 1307||5 March 1321|
|27||Frei Estêvão||11 February 1310||1313|
|28||Fernando II Ramires||19 March 1314||1322|
|29||João II Gomes||25 March 1323||5 December 1327||5 December 1327|
|30||Vasco I Martins||November, 1328||26 August 1342|
|31||Pedro V Afonso||1343||1357|
|32||Afonso Pires||1357||6 September 1372||6 September 1372|
|33||Lourenço I Vicente||27 March 1373||6 November 1373|
|34||João III||6 November 1373||1389||1389|
|36||João (IV) Afonso de Azambuja||1391||1398||23 January 1415|
|37||Gil Alma||6 August 1399||1407||1415|
|38||João V Afonso Aranha||1407||1414|
|39||Fernando III Guerra||1390||1416||1417||26 September 1467|
|41||António Martins de Chaves||1430||1447||1447|
|43||Gonçalo I de Óbidos||14--||1454|
|45||João VI de Azevedo||1465||1494|
|46||Diogo I de Sousa||1494||1505|
|47||Diogo II Álvares da Costa||1505||1507|
|48||Pedro VI Álvares da Costa||1484||12 February 1507||8 January 1535||20 February 1563|
|51||Rodrigo I Pinheiro||1552||1574|
|52||Aires da Silva||1574||4 August 1578||4 August 1578|
|54||Marcos de Lisboa||1591|
|55||Jerónimo I de Menezes||1591|
|56||Gonçalo II de Morais||1618|
|57||Rodrigo II da Cunha||September, 1577||1618||1627||3 January 1643|
|58||João VII de Valadares||1627||1635|
|59||Gaspar do Rego da Fonseca||1635||1639|
||Francisco Pereira Pinto||Chosen in 1640 by Philip III of Portugal but didn't take possession|
|Vacant see (1640–1671)|
||Sebastião César de Menezes||Chosen by John IV of Portugal but not recognized by the Pope|
||Pedro VII de Menezes|
|61||Fernando IV Correia de Lacerda||1673|
|62||João VIII de Sousa|
|63||José I Saldanha||1697||1708||1708|
|64||Tomás de Almeida||5 October 1670||22 July 1709||7 December 1716||22 February 1754|
|Vacant see (1716–1739)|
||João IX Maria||Elected in 1739 but unconfirmed by Clement XII|
|65||José II Maria da Fonseca||1739|
|66||António I de Távora||1766||1766|
|67||Aleixo de Miranda Henriques||1766||1771|
|68||João X Rafael de Mendonça||1771||1773||1773|
|69||Lourenço II Correia de Sá Benevides||1796||1798||1798|
|70||António II de Castro||1814|
|71||João XI Magalhães de Avelar||22 December 1754||29 April 1816||16 May 1833||16 May 1833|
|72||Manuel de Santa Inês||Elected in 1833 but unconfirmed by Gregory XVI|
|73||Jerónimo II da Costa Rebelo||1843||1854||1854|
|74||António III Fonseca Moniz||1854||1859||1859|
|Vacant see (1859–1862)|
|75||João XII de França Castro e Moura||1862||16 October 1868||16 October 1868|
|Vacant see (1868–1871)|
|76||Américo Ferreira dos Santos Silva||16 January 1829||26 June 1871||21 January 1899||21 January 1899|
|77||António IV José de Sousa Barroso||4 November 1854||20 May 1899||31 August 1918||31 August 1918|
|78||António V Barbosa Leão||17 October 1860||16 July 1919||21 June 1929||21 June 1919|
|79||António VI Augusto de Castro Meireles||13 August 1885||21 June 1929||29 March 1942||29 March 1942|
|80||Agostinho de Jesus e Sousa||7 March 1877||16 May 1942||21 February 1952||21 February 1952|
|81||António VII Ferreira Gomes||10 May 1906||13 July 1952||2 May 1982||13 April 1989|
|82||Júlio Tavares Rebimbas||21 January 1922||12 February 1982||13 June 1997||6 December 2010|
|83||Armindo Lopes Coelho||13 February 1931||13 June 1997||22 February 2007||29 September 2010|
|84||Manuel José Macário do Nascimento Clemente||16 July 1948||22 February 2007||18 May 2013||
|Vacant see (2013–2014)|
|85||António Francisco dos Santos||29 August 1948||21 February 2014||
- Catholic Hierarchy page
- Catholic Encyclopedia article
- Azevedo, Carlos A. Moreira (1999-01-27). "Américo Ferreira dos Santos Silva (1830-1899)". Ecclesia.pt (in Portuguese). Archived from the original on 2006-10-12. Retrieved 2006-12-12.
- Chosen as successor of the preceding bishop before the latter's retirement or death .
- Diocese of Angra (2005-08-09). "D. António Augusto de Castro Meireles". Agência Ecclesia - Agência de Notícias da Igreja Católica Portuguesa (in Portuguese). Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2006-12-12.
- Cheney, David M. (2006-08-16). "Porto (Diocese)". The Hierarchy of the Catholic Church. Retrieved 2006-12-12.
- Knight, Kevin. "Catholic Encyclopedia: Oporto". The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume IX. Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved 2006-12-12.
- Peres, Damião; António Cruz; Bernardo Gabriel Cardoso Jr.; B. Xavier Coutinho; Conde de Campo Belo; Cruz Malpique; Artur Magalhães Basto; Eugénio da Cunha e Freitas; João Pinto Ferreira; Luís de Pina; Torquato Soares. "O Porto, Cidade Episcopal: Séculos XII a XIV". In Livraria Civilização Editora. História da Cidade do Porto (in Portuguese). illustrated by Gouvêa Portuense. Portucalense Editora. pp. 159–297. ISBN 972-26-0391-4.