Catholic Church in Laos

The Catholic Church in Laos is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the pope in Rome. The Catholic Church is officially recognized by the Lao Front for National Construction.[1]

Hierarchy

There are no dioceses in the country. Rather, Laos is divided into four Apostolic Vicariates,[2] which are pre-diocesan jurisdictions that are entitled to a titular bishop and are exempt, i.e., directly subject to the Holy See and its missionary Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. The four vicariates are:

Each vicariate is headed by an apostolic vicar, who thereby is a member of the common episcopal conference of Laos and (Indochinese neighbour) Cambodia.

The Holy See has an Apostolic Delegation (papal diplomatic legation of lower rank than an embassy) to Laos. The delegation, however, is based in Bangkok, the capital of neighbouring Thailand. The papal legation to Laos is vested in the Apostolic nuncio to Thailand (as are also the papal legations to Cambodia and Myanmar).