What is a Diocese?

A diocese (from the Greek word dioikesis – which in the Roman Empire meant the territory governed by a City) is a part of the Catholic Church governed by a Bishop.

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Our Diocese

We are the Diocese of Portsmouth, governed by the Bishop of Portsmouth, Bishop Philip Egan. We belong to the One, Holy, Catholic Church, which is led by the Bishop of Rome, Pope Francis.

The Diocese of Portsmouth

Our Diocese is spread across five counties on England’s South Coast, and the Channel Islands. We are the local Church for the whole of Hampshire, Berkshire, the Isle of Wight, Jersey, and the Bailiwick of Guernsey as well as the Southern Part of Oxfordshire and the Eastern part of Dorset.

We are made up of 87 Parishes in 24 Pastoral Areas, for a total of 142 Churches. We have 157 secular priests, 35 houses of religious brothers and sisters, and a Catholic population of more than a quarter of a million.

We belong to the province of Southwark, which covers the whole south coast from Kent to Cornwall. Our Metropolitan is the Archbishop of Southwark. Our province also includes the Archdiocese of Southwark, the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton, and the Diocese of Plymouth.

24 Pastoral Areas

87 Parishes

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