The Diocese of Dunkeld
It is thought that the diocese was constituted as far back as the middle of the ninth century. The ﬁrst occupant was styled Bishop of Fortriu, the name by which the kingdom of the northern Picts was then known. This bishop was also styled Abbot of Dunkeld, perhaps holding jurisdiction, formerly enjoyed by Iona, over the other Columban monasteries in Scotland. The new bishopric appears to have included a great part of what afterwards became the Diocese of Argyll, and retained its jurisdiction over various churches representing old Columban foundations.
There were thirty-five bishops of Dunkeld from its foundation until the suppression of the Catholic hierarchy during the Protestant Reformation in the sixteenth century. The pre-Reformation cathedral, situated in the Perthshire town of Dunkeld, was erected between 1220 and 1500. After the Reformation the cathedral fell partly into ruins, although the choir is used for Presbyterian worship.
The Catholic Church restored the diocese on 4 March 1878, by decree of Pope Leo Xlll. Dunkeld is one of the suffragan sees in the archiepiscopal province of St Andrews and Edinburgh, and includes the counties of Perth, Angus, Clackmannan, Kinross, and the northern part of Fife. The diocesan cathedral is dedicated to Saint Andrew and is located in Dundee rather than Dunkeld, Dundee being the residence of the majority of the Catholics of the diocese and the largest centre of population.
The cathedral chapter, erected in 1895, consists of a provost and eight canons. The diocese comprises 35 parishes of 43,000 Catholics from a total population of 400,000 (10.8%) served by 35 priests and 4 deacons. In area the diocese is 8,495 square kilometres (3,280 sq. miles). Bishop Stephen Robson will be the 9th Bishop of the Diocese of Dunkeld.