Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

(Or Basse Terre; Guadalupensis; Imæ Telluris)

Diocese in the West Indies, comprises the islands of Guadeloupe, Les Saintes, Marie-Galante, La Désirade, and the French portions of St. Martin and St Bartholomew. When, on 4 November, 1493, Christopher Columbus discovered the island of Karukera, he called it Guadalupe, in honor of the miraculous Madonna of Guadalupe in Spain. Guadeloupe has been French since 1653, with the exception of some brief periods of English occupation. It was formerly administered by a prefect Apostolic. In 1837 Jean-Marie de Lamennais, by agreement with the French Government, sent to Guadeloupe, as instructors, several brothers of the Institute Ploërmel. On the publication of the royal ordinance of 5 January, 1840, recalling to the priests of the colonies their obligation to instruct the young slaves, and to the masters their duty of allowing the latter to be instructed, Lamennais realized that the clergy of Guadeloupe must be reorganized. He addressed a note to the Government, in which he asked for the creation of three dioceses, at Martinique, Guadeloupe, and Guiana. Montalembert, in a speech delivered before the Chamber of Peers (7 April, 1845), demanded the appointment, if not of titular bishops, at least of vicars Apostolic, in the colonies. In 1848 Father Libermann, superior-general of the Congregation of the Holy Ghost , drew M. de Falloux's attention to the question, and, by an agreement between France and the Holy See, the Bull of 27 September, 1850, created for Guadeloupe the Bishopric of Basse-Terre as suffragan of the Archdiocese of Bordeaux. The clergy of Guadeloupe are educated in the seminary of the Holy Ghost, at Paris. Its first bishop (1851-53) was the celebrated preacher Lacarrière, of whom Chateaubriand said, "If I were a priest, I should wish to preach like him." In 1905 (the last year of the concordatory regime) the diocese numbered 182,112 inhabitants, 2 archidiaconates, 3 archipresbyterates, 19 deaneries, 37 parishes, 54 priests (besides the bishop and vicars-general ). At that time the regulars were represented by the Fathers of the Holy Ghost , the Brothers of Ploërmel, the Sisters Hospitallers of St. Paul of Chartres , and the Teaching Sisters of St. Joseph of Cluny.


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 in fifteen hardcopy 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

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

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

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Revelation 15:1-4
1 And I saw in heaven another sign, great and ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 98:1, 2-3, 7-8, 9
1 [Psalm] Sing a new song to Yahweh, for he has ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 21:12-19
12 'But before all this happens, you will be seized ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 26th, 2014 Image

St. John Berchmans
November 26: Eldest son of a shoemaker, John was born at Diest, Brabant. He ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter