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Backgrounder

prepared by
Department of Communications
U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
3211 Fourth Street NE ∙ Washington, DC 20017
202-541-3200 ∙ 202-541-3173 fax ∙ www.usccb.org/comm

Archdiocese of New York

(Sources: The 2007 Official Catholic Directory and the archdiocesan website.)

Geography:
The boroughs of Manhattan, Bronx, and Richmond of the City of New York, and the Counties of Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster, and Westchester

Statistics:
Number of Catholics: 2,554,454
Catholics as Percentage of Population: 45%
Number of Parishes: 402
Number of Priests: 1,505
Number of Schools:
Elementary: 223
Secondary: 55
Colleges and Universities: 10

Cathedral: Saint Patrick’s Cathedral

Succession of (Arch)Bishops:
Bishop R. Luke Concanen, O.P. 1808-1810
Bishop John Connolly, O.P. 1814-1825
Bishop John Dubois, S.S. 1826-1842
Archbishop John Hughes 1842-1864 (created first Archbishop in 1850)
Cardinal John McCloskey 1864-1885
Archbishop Michael Augustine Corrigan 1885-1902
Cardinal John Farley 1902-1918
Cardinal Patrick Hayes 1919-1938
Cardinal Francis Spellman 1939-1967
Cardinal Terence Cooke 1968-1983
Cardinal John O’Connor 1984-2000
Cardinal Edward Egan 2000-present

Key Historical Dates:
1808: The Diocese of New York is created as a suffragan see of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.
1810: Bishop Concanen, the first bishop of New York, dies without ever setting foot on U.S. soil. (An Irish resident of Rome, he was unable to arrange passage to the U.S. because of the Napoleonic Wars.)
1836: John Neumann (pronounced Noy-mann) is ordained a priest for the Diocese of New York. He will later become Bishop of Philadelphia and be canonized in 1977.
1850: Pope Pius IX makes New York an archdiocese.
1858: The building of Saint Patrick’s Cathedral begins with the laying of the cornerstone. The cathedral will be dedicated in 1879.
1873: Saint Joseph’s Parish in Yorkville is established to meet the needs of German immigrants. The parish grew out of a community worshipping in the chapel of Saint Joseph’s Orphanage, established on the Upper East Side to give the orphans access to fields, forests, and fresh air.
1875: Archbishop John McCloskey of New York becomes the first American cardinal.
1883: Saint Benedict the Moor Church is established as the first national parish for African-American Catholics.
1889: Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini arrives in the United States. In 1947, she will become the first U.S. citizen canonized.
1896: Saint Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie opens.
1933: Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin found the Catholic Worker movement.
1965: Pope Paul VI becomes the first Pope to visit the United States, addressing the United Nations.
1979: Pope John Paul II visits New York and addresses the United Nations.
1991: Cardinal O’Connor founds the Order of the Sisters of Life.
1995: Pope John Paul II visits New York for the second time.
2006: The Archdiocese of New York launches the Catholic Channel on Sirius Radio.