Monday, April 21, 2008

Boyea's Apostolic Succession

One week from tomorrow, on the Feast of St. Catherine of Siena, my diocese will have a new bishop installed, Bishop Earl Boyea, formerly Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Detroit. I'm sure many of you know about this site already, but at Catholic Hierarchy you can look up every member of the hierarchy, see their biographical information, follow up on what bishops died and are appointed every single day and get many other interesting tidbits of episcopal minutae.

Most interesting to me is that this site gives each bishop's "episcopal lineage," or their geneaology of apostolic succession. I looked up Bishop Boyea and was surprised to find that his succession comes through Pope St. Pius X. Have a look (dates are of ordination) :

Earl Boyea ordained by Cardinal Maida (2002)
Cardinal Maida ordained by Pio Cardinal Laghi (1984)
Cardinal Laghi ordained by Cardinal Cicognani (1969)
Cardinal Cicognani ordained by Cardinal Rossi (1933)
Cardinal Rossi ordained by Cardinal De Lai (1920)
Cardinal De Lai ordained by Pope St. Pius X (1911)
Pope St. Pius X (Giuseppe Sarto) ordained by Cardinal Parocchi (1884)
Cardinal Parocchi ordained by Cardinal Patrizi Naro (1871)
Cardinal Patrizi Naro ordained by Cardinal Odescalchi (1828)
Cardinal Odescalchi ordained by Cardinal della Somaglia (1823)
Cardinal della Somaglia ordained by Bl. Hyacinthe-Sigismond Cardinal Gerdil (1788)
Bl. Cardinal Gerdil ordained by Cardinal Colonna (1777)
Cardinal Colonna ordained by Pope Clement XIII (1762)
Pope Clement XIII (Carlo della Torre Rezzonico) ordained by Pope Benedict XIV (1743)
Pope Benedict XIV (Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini) ordained by Pope Benedict XIII (1724)
Pope Benedict XIII (Orsini de Gravina) ordained by Cardinal Albertoni (1675)
Cardinal Albertoni ordained by Cardinal Carpegna (1666)
Cardinal Carpegna ordained by Cardinal Caetani (1630)
Cardinal Caetani ordained by Cardinal Ludovisi (1622)
Cardinal Ludovisi ordained by Archbishop Sanvitale (1621)
Cardinal Sanvitale ordained by Cardinal Bernerio (1604)
Cardinal Bernerio ordained by Cardinal Santorio (1586)
Cardinal Santorio ordained by Cardinal Rebiba (1566)

The list ends at Cardinal Rebiba. Try looking up your bishop!


Unknown said...

Wouldn't all bishops go back to the 12 Apostles - how does that work if we have apostolic succession? I would think every bishop is a successor of one of the original 12. I'm not being contrary, I don't understand why the list for Bishop Boyea ends with Cardinal Rebiba.

One other question too: Who attends a bishop's installation? All religious in the diocese? Is it an open Mass & Ceremony or is invitation only? I'm just curious as it's a relatively rare event.

Boniface said...


I don't know who attends a Bishop's installation...we are having one on April 29th, but I won't be there.

Apostolic Succession does mean that it goes all the way back to the Apostles. However, in the case of Cardinal Rebiba, it was uncertain which of two bishops he got his succession from, and so we cannot make a list with any certainty before him, although it is certain that someway it goes back to the 12.

91% of all Bishops alive today trace their succession through Rebiba.

Zach said...

I wonder why that is.