About the Diocese
The Diocese of Santa Rosa was established on February 21, 1962. Drawn from portions of the Archdiocese of San Francisco and the Diocese of Sacramento, the new diocese formed the northern counties of California into a new Church territory with its See in Santa Rosa.
Today, the Diocese Rosa includes an official Catholic population of 178,443 people in the counties of Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino, Lake, Humboldt, and Del Norte. As such, it is geographically large and very diverse, but demographically it remains the smallest of California’s dioceses.
St. Eugene Cathedral was built in 1950 on the site of the Asistencia Santa Rosa de Lima (akin to a satellite of the Mision San Francisco de Solano in Sonoma), a small mission outpost established by the creek where a young Native American woman was baptized in 1828, on the feast of St. Rose. To mark that occasion Fr. Juan Amoros, OFM, a successor of Bl. Junípero Serra , declared the creek and its entire area would henceforth be known as Santa Rosa. And so it remains.
11,711 square miles comprising Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Mendocino, Napa and Sonoma counties in the State of California
Established as a diocese February 21, 1962, from portions of the Archdiocese of San Francisco and the Diocese of Sacramento. Pastored in succession by five bishops: Leo T. Maher (1962-1969), Mark J. Hurley (1969-1986), John T. Steinbock (1987-1991), G. Patrick Ziemann (1992-1999), Daniel F. Walsh (2000-2011), and Robert F. Vasa (2011-Present).
178,443 Catholics in an area population of 948,769.
37 Active diocesan priests
5 Active outside the diocese
11 Active serving from other dioceses
12 Religious order priests
1 Bishop emeritus
26 Retired priests
0 Priests on medical leave
1 Unassigned priests
1 Chartered priest
5 Retired extern priests
28 Women religious (sisters)
25 Religious brothers
39 Active permanent deacons in the diocese
5 active permanent deacons outside the diocese
4 retired permanent deacons
28 Lay ministers
5 High schools
10 Elementary schools
2 Private school
Catechesis/Religious education enrollment: 2,001 high school and 4,789 elementary for a total of 6,790.
Total students under Catholic formation: 10,731
5 Catholic hospitals
1 Home for the aged
1 Residential Care of Children
2 Special centers for social services
Sacraments/Rites per year
3,017 Infant baptisms
100 Adult baptisms
73 Received into full Communion
2,421 First Communions
All figures from the 2015 Official Catholic Directory of the United States