Diocesan bishop

A diocesan bishop, within various Christian traditions, is a bishop or archbishop in pastoral charge of a diocese or archdiocese.

In relation to other bishops, a diocesan bishop may be a suffragan, a metropolitan (if an archbishop) or a primate. They may also hold various other positions such as being a cardinal or patriarch.

Titular bishops in the Roman Catholic Church may be assistant bishops, coadjutor bishops, auxiliary bishops, nuncios or similar papal diplomats, officials of the Roman Curia etc. They may also hold other positions such as cardinal. The see of titular bishops only nominal, not pastoral.[1]


Roman Catholic Church

See also: Catholic Church hierarchy § Diocesan bishops and Bishop (Catholic Church) § Diocesan bishops or eparchs

A "diocesan bishop" [2] — in the Catholic Church — is entrusted with the pastoral care of a local Church (diocese), over which he holds ordinary jurisdiction.[3] He is responsible for teaching, governing, and sanctifying the faithful of his diocese, sharing these duties with the priests and deacons who serve under him.[4]

Coadjutor bishop

The Holy See can appoint a coadjutor bishop[5] for a diocese. He has special faculties and the right of succession.

Auxiliary bishop

The diocesan bishop may request that the Holy See appoint one or more auxiliary bishops to assist him in his duties.[6]

Bishop emeritus

When a diocesan bishop or auxiliary bishop retires, the word "emeritus" is added to his former title, i.e., "Archbishop Emeritus of ...", "Bishop Emeritus of ...", or "Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of ...". Examples of usage are: "The Most Reverend (or Right Reverend) John Jones, Bishop Emeritus of Anytown"; and "His Eminence Cardinal James Smith, Archbishop Emeritus of Anycity". The term "Bishop Emeritus" of a particular see can apply to several people, if the first lives long enough. The sees listed in the 2007 Annuario Pontificio as having more than one bishop emeritus included Zárate-Campana, Villavicencio, Versailles, and Uruguaiana. There were even three Archbishops Emeriti of Taipei. The same suffix was applied to the Bishop of Rome, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, on his retirement.