Archdiocese of Mechlin-Brussels

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Archdiocese of Mechlin-Brussels
Map of the Archdiocese of Mechlin-Brussels
Basic data
Country Belgium
Diocesan bishop Cardinal Jozef De Kesel
Auxiliary bishop Jean-Luc Hudsyn
Jean Kockerol's
Koenraad Vanhoutte
Emeritus diocesan bishop André-Joseph Léonard
Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus Jan De Bie
Vicar General Etienne Van Billoen
founding 1961
surface 3,635 km²
Vicariates 6 (June 10, 2008)
Parishes 645 (2016 / AP 2017 )
Residents 2,842,000 (2016 / AP 2017 )
Catholics 1,818,000 (2016 / AP 2017 )
proportion of 64%
Diocesan priest 601 (2016 / AP 2017 )
Religious priest 1,142 (2016 / AP 2017 )
Catholics per priest 1,043
Permanent deacons 91 (2016 / AP 2017 )
Friars 1,423 (2016 / AP 2017 )
Religious sisters 1,847 (2016 / AP 2017 )
rite Roman rite
Liturgical language French
cathedral St. Romuald in Mechelen
Co-cathedral Ss. Michael and Gudula in Brussels
Suffragan dioceses Diocese of Antwerp
Diocese of Bruges
Diocese of Gent
Diocese of Hasselt
Diocese of Liège
Diocese of Namur
Diocese of Tournai

The Archdiocese of Mechelen-Brussels ( Latin Archidioecesis Mechliniensis-Bruxellensis , French Archidiocèse de Malines-Bruxelles , Dutch Aartsbisdom Mechelen-Brussel ) with its seat in Mechlin has existed for about 450 years. The associated ecclesiastical province now includes the entire Kingdom of Belgium . The Archbishop of Mechlin-Brussels is the Primate of the Catholic Church in Belgium .



On December 6, 1961, on the initiative of Cardinal Suenens, the old Archdiocese of Mechlin was divided into the Diocese of Antwerp and the Archdiocese of Mechlin-Brussels. It includes the provinces of Flemish Brabant and Walloon Brabant , the capital region of Brussels and part of the province of Antwerp (the city of Mechlin).

In 1962, Cardinal Suenens decided to divide the Archdiocese of Mechlin-Brussels into three vicariates:

Speech autonomy

In 1969 Cardinal Suenens recognized the autonomy of the Dutch- and French-speaking pastoral care in the Vicariate of Brussels with their own responsibilities and infrastructure. Between 1962 and 1982 the vicariats were headed by a vicar general , with the Brussels vicar general from 1963 assisted by three adjutors. From 1982 to 2002 Archbishop Cardinal Danneels were appointed two auxiliary bishops in Brussels. Had functions of vicar general. Since his appointment on March 20, 2002 as Auxiliary Bishop and Vicar General for the City of Brussels, Jozef De Kesel has been striving for the unity of the Church of Brussels.


On June 24, 2010, the offices of the Archdiocese in Mechelen were searched by the Brussels Public Prosecutor's Office. According to the public prosecutor's office, the aim of the investigation is to find incriminating or exculpatory material in a case of sexual abuse . The cell phones of the church representatives present were temporarily removed, the graves of deceased cardinals searched and the assembled bishops detained and interrogated for hours . The Belgian Bishops' Conference and Pope Benedict XVI. expressed themselves "surprised" about the behavior of the investigative authorities. On August 13, 2010, the Brussels Court of Appeal declared the search lawful and allowed the investigation to continue.


See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Friedhelm Jürgensmeier (ed.): Handbuch der Mainz Kirchengeschichte , Echter Verlag, Würzburg 1997–2002, p. 262
  2. ^ History of the diocese on its website (Dutch) ( Memento from February 2, 2015 in the Internet Archive )
  3. ^ Belgium: Public prosecutor searches diocesan offices in Mechelen , Catholic Press Agency Austria, June 24, 2010
  4. ^ Dutroux files also found during church raid , Der Standard , July 7, 2010
  5. ^ Belgian clerical abuse inquiry to proceed , Irish Times , August 14, 2010