Roman Catholic Diocese of Jackson

Roman Catholic Diocese Of Jackson

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Roman Catholic Diocese of Jackson

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The Roman Catholic Diocese of Jackson is a diocese in the ecclesiastical province of Mobile, in the southern United States of America. Its ecclesiastical jurisdiction includes the northern and central parts of the state of Mississippi, an area of 97,458 square kilometers (37,643 square miles). It is the largest diocese, by area, in the United States east of the Mississippi River. It was formerly known as the Diocese of Natchez (1837–1956) and the Diocese of Natchez-Jackson (1956–77). Jackson, Mississippi is the episcopal see.


The region which is now the Diocese of Jackson made its first contacts with the Catholic Church through French Jesuit and Capuchin missionaries during the expeditions of La Salle, Marquette, and d'Iberville in the 17th and 18th centuries. In 1787, three Spanish priests, Fathers McKenna, White, and Savage, arrived at Natchez from Salamanca and erected three missions in the vicinity. These missions, however, virtually disappeared after the Spanish turned over the area to the United States, and the church's property was confiscated by secular authorities.

The diocese was originally erected as the Vicariate Apostolic of Mississippi, an administrative region of the church separate from the Diocese of Louisiana and the Two Floridas (to which it had previously belonged, and which itself would later become the Diocese of New Orleans), on 18 July 1826. At the head of the Vicariate was Louis-Guillaume-Valentin Dubourg, P.S.S., who served less than a...
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