Facts and Backgrounders

The Gulf Coast's largest Archdiocese and Catholic school system

The Archdiocese at a glance

The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston serves more than 1.7 million Catholics in 10 counties. It is the largest Roman Catholic diocese in Texas and the 5th largest in the United States. 

The Archdiocese has the largest private school system in Texas, with more than 19,500 students enrolled in 59 schools throughout the counties of the Archdiocese. Archdiocesan schools, all of which offer need-based tuition assistance for students, serve students PreK-3 through 12th grade.

A deeper look

The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston...

… serves 1.7 million-plus Catholics.
… is the first and oldest diocese in Texas, established by Pope Pius IX in 1847, when Galveston was named the mother diocese of the Lone Star State.
… is home to the only cardinal in the Southern United States. Daniel Cardinal DiNardo was elevated to the College of Cardinals in 2007.
… includes 147 parishes in 10 counties: Harris, Galveston, Fort Bend, Brazoria, Montgomery, Austin, Grimes, San Jacinto, Walker and Waller.
… has 448 priests, 411 religious sisters, 13 religious brothers and 438 permanent deacons.
… includes some of Texas' largest churches, such as Epiphany of Our Lord parish in Katy, with 6,200 registered families, and St. Laurence in Sugar Land, with 7,300 families. St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Northwest Houston is the largest parish in the Archdiocese, with 10,255 families. At least 20 other parishes have 3,500 families or more.
… reflects the region’s multicultural character with one of the most ethnically diverse populations in the nation. Mass is celebrated in 14 different languages in the Archdiocese.
… is one of the largest social service providers in Texas, offering specialized children’s services, housing programs, food banks, protective shelters, half-way houses, immigration and refugee programs and countless other ministries to people in need. In 2016, more than 650,000 people of all creeds and backgrounds were served at local Catholic hospitals, health care centers, social services agencies, daycare centers, schools and the Archdiocesan nursing care facility.
… oversees the largest private school system in Texas. More than 19,500 students are educated in the Archdiocese’s 59 Catholic schools, which includes 43 diocesan grade schools, six private elementary schools and ten private high schools.
… is one of the fastest growing Archdioceses in the nation, welcoming more than 2,350 new Catholics over Easter weekend in April 2017.


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