Bishopric of Worms

The diocese of Worms (Latin Dioecesis Wormatiensis ) was a Roman Catholic diocese based in Worms. The founded in late antiquity diocese reached a peak of power and influence in the Carolingian period and the early Middle Ages. Episcopal Church was the Worms Cathedral, one of the three Rhenish Imperial Cathedrals. The Bishopric of Worms was also the secular authority over the Lobdengau, a small area around Ladenburg held. With the Reformation, the diocese lost most of its parishes and was finally dissolved in 1800.

History of the Diocese

The origins of the diocese of Worms are the earliest in the time of Constantine. Thus, a bishop is 346 for the controversial Cologne Synod indeed mentioned, detectable for this time but no cathedral.

Only in the Frankish period sets the list of bishops of Worms with the 614 participating in the Paris Synod Bishop Berhtulf again. Various referencing Metzer influences circumstantial make a reorganization of the diocese under the rule of the resident there Austrasian king Childebert II ( 575-596 ) likely. A little later there are already first Wormser missionary centers of the Rhine. Under the Carolingians Worms was a center of power, so that its bishops in the 8th and 9th centuries were close to the royal court and their office often at the same time combined with an abbacy located outside the diocese.

The Metropolitan Association of Mainz belonging diocese still had in the 12th century over a considerable economic power and was divided into four Archidiakonate. Their owners were the provost of Worms and the left bank of the hinterland, the dean of St. Paul in Worms for the left bank of the northern part of the diocese, the pastor of St. Cyriacus in Neuhausen for Lobdengau and the provost of St. Peter in Wimpfen for Elsenzgau and the Gartachgau in the eastern area of the diocese.

The cathedral chapter decreed in 1270 over 50 prebends, the number to 1291 fell to 44 in 1475 and another 43 count. However, the number of canons only amounted to 35, for which there were six other prebends, whose owners were not canon, and which had to have the priesthood. Since 1281, the chapter took no commoner in its ranks, so that its members primarily came from the Palatinate nobility.

Since the 13th century, the bishops were represented in Pontifikalfunktionen by auxiliary bishops. In the 14th century, the archdeacons lost importance and influence of the vicar general increased markedly. In the late Middle Ages the Diocese of ten deaneries consisted of about 255 parishes and about 400 spiritual people within the Bishop city.

In the 16th century, large parts of the diocese of the Reformation fell victim so that the papal legate to the Diet of Augsburg in 1566 Commodone at least a temporary union with the diocese of Mainz suggested that this will not be happening. By 1600, the diocese counted only for 15 parishes.

In order to ensure the survival of the diocese, stayed the chapter since the end of the 16th century that his Elect already had prior to their election of bishops over influence and benefices outside the diocese, and after the Thirty Years' War it renounced then finally to a choice ex gremio and postulated instead Foreign ecclesiastical princes. This was also the consequence that the chapter could also gain a greater impact on the administration of the diocese since the bishop is not usually resided in the diocese.

The now beginning reconstruction of the parish system was generally by religious communities, which thus also became the main beams of the regular parish ministry in the future. Until 1732, the number of parishes could be expanded to about 100. Since 1711, the diocese was once again a suffragan bishop. Since it was without its own seminary, Fulda was able to extend its influence for the training of secular priests for the Diocese of Worms.

The left-bank part of the diocese was permanently occupied by French troops in 1797 and eventually fell legally to France. By the Concordat of 1801, the diocese borders were redefined in France and now correspond to the boundaries of the respective departments. Therefore, we summed up the left bank of Worms diocese parts with many other church part Territories in the newly formed, large French diocese of Mainz together; it was congruent with the new political Département du Mont- Tonnerre. After the return of these left bank of the Rhine in Germany was divided in 1817 and the United Diocese of Mainz again. The southern part, with a large area of the former Bishopric of Worms (eg Frankenthal, Green City, Bad Durkheim, Kaiserslautern) came to the restored diocese of Speyer and was defeated politically Bavaria. The northern (smaller) part of the former Worms diocesan territory (mainly Worms and its surroundings ) remained in the diocese of Mainz and was Hesse.

The significant rechtsrheinische share of the diocese of Worms was still continued until 1827 as an independent vicariate Lampert home. In the restructuring of the right bank diocese borders the southern part of the northern and eastern part ( Lampert Home, Bad Wimpfen ) got away with the Archbishop of Freiburg (mainly Mannheim and Heidelberg), to the diocese of Mainz.

History of the Bishopric of Worms

The Bailiwick of the diocese of Worms lay until 1156 when the Count of Saarbrücken and then got to the Count Palatine of the Rhine. Although the bishop during the Hohenstaufen period was of great importance, he succeeded in the long run only the acquisition of a small dominion, whose residence was 1400 Ladenburg. As a prince-bishop, the bishop of Worms was represented by a Virilstimme in the Imperial.

1797/1801 were the left bank of goods, most recently with eight square miles and a population of 20,000, which included about 8,500 guilders in annual income, to France. The right of the Rhine came in 1803 at Baden and Hesse.

Far away from the Bishopric of Worms in Central Hesse ( see history section) had been assigned in the former Lahngau extensive possessions of the Emperors. So entrusted the guardianship 933 Government of the minor King Otto III. the pin Weilburg must resign with the associated ownership and rights to the Worms Bishop Hildibald, the head of the Royal Chancery, as a kind of compensation that the bishopric of Worms had in the area of Worms in the Palatinate Forest over the Salierherzog Otto. This was the bishopric of Worms a political factor in the Middle Lahn area. By the year 1002 almost all of the Abbey of Weilburg came to the bishopric of Worms. Owning centered around Frankenberg ( Eder), Marburg, Glad Bach, Haiger, Weilburg and Nassau.

To this end, writes Karl E. Demandt in history of the state of Hesse:

The governors of the pen Weilburg, the Counts of Nassau, but the influence of the diocese pushed back more and more, thus extended their dominion, and strengthened him.