General Information

Archdiocese of Chicago

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago is a particular church of the Roman Catholic Church in the United States. The Archdiocese of Chicago is one of the largest dioceses in the nation by population and is comprised of Cook and Lake counties, covering 1,411 square miles of Illinois. The original Diocese of Chicago was created on November 28, 1842, and was elevated to the dignity of an archdiocese on September 10, 1880. On September 27, 1908, the Diocese of Rockford was broken off from the Archdiocese, and to create the Diocese of Joliet in Illinois on December 11, 1948, territory was taken from Peoria, Rockford and Chicago diocese. The Archbishop of Chicago concurrently serves as metropolitan bishop of the Ecclesiastical Province of Chicago, whose suffragan bishops are the bishops of Belleville, Joliet, Peoria, Rockford, and Springfield.

There are 2,363,000 Catholics living in the Cook and Lake counties of Illinois, or 39% of the population. Of these, 1,210,000 (51%) are white, 939,000 (39.8%) are Hispanic, 93,000 (3.9%) are African-American, 105,000 (4.4%) are Asian or other and the remaining 15,000 (0.6%) are multi-racial. There are 366 parishes in the Archdiocese and 1,752 scheduled weekend Masses, including 246 in Spanish and 87 in Polish. There are also 217 elementary schools, 40 secondary schools, 217 seminary students at the Archdiocesan seminary, the University of St. Mary of the Lake, also known as Mundelein Seminary, 263 students in high school or college seminary formation programs, 5 Catholic colleges and universities, 47 cemeteries, and 21 hospitals. The diocese is staffed by 842 active and retired diocesan priests, 836 religious priests, 321 religious brothers, 2,503 religious sisters, 611 permanent deacons (the most of any Roman Catholic diocese worldwide) and 272 certified pastoral associates and pastoral ministers.

Holy Name Cathedral in downtown Chicago is the mother church of the Archdiocese of Chicago. The Archdiocese also has three minor basilicas, the most of any diocese in the United States: Basilica of Saint Hyacinth, Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica, Queen of All Saints Basilica. His Eminence Francis Eugene Cardinal George, OMI is the current Archbishop of Chicago.