Department of Communications
U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
3211 Fourth Street NE · Washington, DC 20017
202-541-3200 · 202-541-3173 fax · www.usccb.org/comm
Archdiocese of Louisville
(Sources: The 2007 Official Catholic Directory
and the archdiocesan website.)
Twenty-four counties in central Kentucky: Adair, Barren, Bullitt, Casey, Clinton, Cumberland, Green, Hardin, Hart, Henry, Jefferson, Larue, Marion, Meade, Metcalfe. Monroe, Nelson, Oldham, Russell, Shelby, Spencer, Taylor, Trimble, Washington.
Number of Catholics: 195,800
Catholics as Percentage of Population: 17%
Number of Parishes: 112
Number of Priests: 211
Number of Schools:
Colleges and Universities: 3
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
Succession of (Arch)Bishops:
Bishop Benedict Joseph Flaget, S.S. (Bishop of Bardstown) 1810-1850
Bishop John B. David (coadjutor) 1819-1849
Bishop Guy Ignatius Chabrat (coadjutor) 1834-1868
Bishop Martin John Spalding 1848-1864
Bishop Peter Joseph Lavialle 1865-1867
Bishop William George McCloskey 1868-1909
Bishop Denis O'Donaghue 1910-1924
Archbishop John A. Floersh 1924-1967 (became archbishop in 1937)
Archbishop Thomas J. McDonough 1967-1981
Archbishop Thomas C. Kelly, O.P. 1981-2007
Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz 2007-present
Key Historical Dates:
1793: Father Stephen Badin, the first priest ordained in the United States, arrives to serve the Catholic population of Kentucky.
1808: The Diocese of Bardstown is established in Kentucky.
1831: The Sisters of Charity of Nazareth found Presentation Academy, the oldest continuously operating high school in Louisville.
1841: The see is moved from Bardstown to Louisville.
1848: Trappist monks from France settle at Gethsemani Farm in Kentucky. This establishment will become an Abbey in 1850 and the first abbot in the United States will be appointed to lead it. (In the twentieth century, Thomas Merton will become a monk at this abbey.)
1852: The Cathedral of the Assumption is completed.
1855: Anti-Catholic and anti-immigrant riots break out resulting in the deaths of at least 22 people.
1937: Louisville is established as an archdiocese.
1962-1965: Sister Mary Luke Tobin of the Archdiocese of Louisville serves as the United States' only female auditor during the Second Vatican Council.