Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo


A suffragan of the Archdiocese of St. Paul, Minnesota , comprises the counties of Stearns, Sherburne, Benton, Morrison, Mille Lacs, Kanabec, Grant, Pope, Stevens, Isanti, Traverse, Douglas, Wilkin, Otter-Tail, Todd, Wadena, in the State of Minnesota, an area of 12,251 square miles. The bishop resides in St. Cloud, Stearns county. In 1680 Father Hennepin visited the Indians at Mille Lacs, and for one hundred and seventy years no other priest came to these regions. In 1851, when this part of Minnesota was thrown open to white settlers, the history of the Diocese of St. Cloud begins. In 1852 Rev. Francis Pierz (Pirc), a native of Carniola, Austria, came from his former Indian missions at Lake Superior to Minnesota to labour among the Chippewa Indians. Finding the country well adapted to agriculture, he announced the fact in some Catholic German papers, and thus caused a large immigration of German Catholics, especially to Stearns county. In 1856 Bishop Cretin of St. Paul sent three Benedictines, Fathers Demetrius de Marogna, Cornelius Wittmann, and Bruno Riss, to attend the ever-ìncreasing numbers of settlers. They settled on a piece of land near the present city of St. Cloud, where they built a small log house and chapel. In 1857 they erected a college, and opened a school with five pupils. A change of location, however, was desirable, hence land was secured around St. John's Lake, and in 1866 a college and monastery were permanently established. They have now flourishing parishes and a university with more than three hundred students. The first abbot, Rt. Rev. Rupert Seidenbusch, was made Vicar Apostolic of Northern Minnesota (1875). He resided in St. Cloud until 1888 when, on account of poor health, he resigned. He built the present pro- cathedral and died 3 June, 1895. The present Diocese of St. Cloud was created in 1889 with Rt. Rev. Dr. Otto Zardetti as its first bishop. Dr. Zardetti, a native of Switzerland, was born 24 Jan., 1846. He was ordained priest 21 Aug., 1870, and in 1881 became professor of dogma in the St. Francis Seminary, near Milwaukee. In 1886 he was made vicar-general of Bishop Marty of Yankton. As Bishop of St. Cloud, he was extremely active, and renowned as a pulpit orator. In Feb., 1894, he was made Archbishop of Bucharest in Rumania and died at Rome 9 May, 1902. When he took charge of the Diocese of St. Cloud, he found about 30,000 souls in the charge of 69 priests, 52 religious and 17 diocesan. When he resigned, there were about 40,000 souls in the charge of 33 secular priests and 16 religious, besides 19 religious in the monastery. His successor was Rt. Rev. Martin Marty, O.S.B., also a native of Switzerland. In 1879 he was appointed Vicar Apostolic of Dakota, residing in Yankton, in 1889 first Bishop of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and 31 Dec., 1894, was transferred to St. Cloud. He took charge of the new see 12 March, 1895, but died 19 Sept., 1896. Rt. Rev. Mgr. Jos. Bauer was administrator of the diocese until 28 Sept., 1897, when the present bishop, James Trobec, arrived as third bishop of the diocese. There are about 62,000 souls ; 125 priests, 78 secular and 47 religious; 115 churches and 12 chapels ; 1 university ; 2 academies; 4 hospitals ; 1 home for old people; 1 orphan asylum ; parochial schools wherever possible. The religious communities represented in the diocese are the Benedictines and the Holy Cross Fathers; the Benedictine Sisters, who number about 400 and have charge of parochial schools, a hospital, and a home for the aged; the Sisters of St. Francis, who have charge of an orphan asylum and three hospitals ; the Sisters of St. Mary of the Presentation.

More Encyclopedia

The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed between 1907 and 1912 in fifteen hard copy volumes.

Catholic Encyclopedia

Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.

No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.

Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912

Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • First time in 400 years - 61 cloistered nuns go to prison
  • Advent Prayer HD Video
  • 'I felt that Jesus called me to this': Pope Francis uses drowned ...
  • Daily Reading for Wednesday, June 1st, 2016 HD Video
  • St. Joan of Arc: Saint of the Day for Monday, May 30, 2016
  • How much did Goldman Sachs' CEO invest in hedge fund?: Hillary ...
  • Daily Readings for Monday, May 30, 2016

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Kings 8:41-43
41 'Even the foreigner, not belonging to your people Israel but coming ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 117:1, 2
1 Alleluia! Praise Yahweh, all nations, extol him, all ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 7:1-10
1 When he had come to the end of all he wanted the people to hear, he ... Read More

Reading 2, Galatians 1:1-2, 6-10
1 From Paul, an apostle appointed not by human beings nor through any ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 29th, 2016 Image

St. Maximinus of Trier
May 29: Bishop of Trier, Germany, from 332, and a miracle ... Read More