Catholic Church in Nigeria

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Catholic Church in Nigeria
TypeNational polity
GovernanceCatholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria
PopePope Francis
PresidentAugustine Obiora Akubeze
LanguageEnglish, Latin
Members20.0 million (2010)
Official websiteCatholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria

The Catholic Church in Nigeria is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope, the curia in Rome, and the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria (CBCN). The present president of the CBCN as of 2020 is Augustine Obiora Akubeze, Archbishop of Benin city, who was preceded by the Archbishop of Jos Catholic Diocese, Ignatius Kaigama.[1][2]

The Latin and Eastern Catholic Churches comprise the world's largest Christian Church, and its largest religious grouping. In 2005, there were an estimated 19 million baptised Catholics in Nigeria.[3] In 2010 the Catholic population accounted for approximately 12.6% of the population.[4]

Nigeria, together with Congo Democratic Republic, boasts of the highest number of priests in Africa. The boom in vocation to the priesthood in Nigeria is mainly in the eastern part (especially among the Igbo ethnic group) which accounts for over 70 percent of the country's Catholic population.

The second papal visit to the country in 1998 witnessed the beatification of Blessed Cyprian Michael Iwene Tansi.[5] Pope John Paul II proclaimed him blessed at Oba, Onitsha Archdiocese, a local Church established by the apostle of eastern Nigerian, Bishop Joseph Shanahan, CSSp.

The official patron saints of Nigeria are: Mary, Queen of Nigeria and Saint Patrick of Ireland.[6]

Map of Nigeria

List of dioceses[edit]

Archdioceses 9
Suffragan Dioceses 43
Apostolic Vicariates 2
Parishes 1,905 (2004)
Diocesan Priests 3,452
Religious Priests 694
Total Priests 4,146 (2004)
Religious Women 3,674
Major seminaries in Nigeria 6
Major seminarians
Minor seminaries in Nigeria 20
Minor seminarians
Total seminarians 3,755 (2004)
Educational institutes 4,163
Charitable institutes 1,202
References Italian page for 2004[7]

Within Nigeria the hierarchy consists of:

  • Archbishopric
    • Bishopric

Immediately subject to the Holy See:

Episcopal conference[edit]

The Catholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria is the Nigerian episcopal conference.

Catholic traditionalism[edit]

A more traditionalist subset of the Catholic Church is also present in Nigeria and embodied by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (Nne Enyemaka Shrine,[8] Umuaka). There also exists a community of the irregular status Society of St. Pius X (Saint Michael's Priory,[9][10] Enugu).

Catholic universities in Nigeria[edit]

Major seminaries in Nigeria[edit]

Minor seminaries in Nigeria[edit]

  • St. Augustine's seminary, Amechi Ezzamgbo, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State
  • Queen of Apostles Seminary, Afaha Obong, Abak, Akwa Ibom State
  • Immaculate Conception Seminary, Mfamosing, Cross River State
  • St. John Vianney Minor Seminary, Barkin-Ladi, Plateau State
  • St. James' Junior Seminary, Yandev Gboko
  • St. Jude's Minor Seminary, Kuje Abuja
  • St Theresa's Minor Seminary Oke-Are Ibadan
  • Sacred Hearts Minor Seminary Akure
  • St. Clement's Minor Seminary, Adankolo-Lokoja, Kogi State
  • St Paul's Seminary Ukpor, Nnewi Anambra State
  • All Hallows Seminary, Onitsha Anambra State
  • St Joseph's Seminary Special Science School, Awka-Etiti Anambra State.
  • Mercy Seminary, Bende Abia State
  • Immaculate Conception Seminary, Ahiaeke Umuahia, Abia State
  • St. Dominic Savio Seminary, Akpu, Anambra State
  • St John Bosco Seminary, Isuaniocha, Anambra State
  • Holy Martyrs of Uganda seminary Effurun, Delta State
  • Annunciation Seminary Amaudara, Abia State
  • St John-cross minor seminary, Isienu-Nsukka, Enugu state
  • St Charles Borromeo seminary, Imiringi, Bayelsa State.
  • St Mary's Seminary Umuowa, Orlu, Imo State.
  • Bonus Pastor Seminary Osina, Ideato North, Imo State.
  • Assumpta Minor Seminary, Owerri Archdiocese.
  • Mater Ecclesiae Seminary, Nguru Mbaise, Ahiara Diocese
  • St Peter Claver's Seminary Okpala Owerri Archdiocese
  • Pope John Paul II Seminary Yala Okpoma Ogoja Diocese
  • St. Peter's Seminary Ogii, Okigwe Diocese
  • Sacred Heart Seminary, Rumuebiekwe Port Hacourt, Port hacourt Diocese
  • St. Felix Seminary Ejeme-Anigor, Delta State
  • St. Joseph Seminary Basawa, Zaria, Kaduna State.

Nigerians who have been canonized[edit]

Catholic religious congregations founded in Nigeria[edit]

Missionary societies active in Nigeria[edit]

Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate - Website:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN)". Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  2. ^ Olowolagba, Fikayo (22 February 2018). "Catholic bishops elect new president". Daily Post Nigeria. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  3. ^ Craig Timberg, "Nigeria's Spiritual Rainmaker is Eyed at Vatican," Washington Poet, 17 April 2005, A1
  4. ^ Pew Research Center: Christian Population as Percentages of total population by country 2010
  5. ^ "Blessed Iwene Tansi: The patron saint of Nigeria's democracy @20". TheCable. 13 June 2018. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  6. ^ Online, Catholic. "Patron Saints: N – Saints & Angels". Catholic Online. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  7. ^ Italian WikiPage Chiesa Cattolica in Nigeria statistics from 2004 it:Chiesa cattolica in Nigeria
  8. ^ "FSSP in Nigeria". Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  9. ^ "District of Great Britain". District of Great Britain. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  10. ^[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ "Veritas University Abuja". Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  12. ^ "Welcome to Pan-Atlantic University". Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  13. ^ "DON BOSCO INSTITUTE OF PHILOSOPHY, IBADAN – Lumen et Sapientia". Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  14. ^ "Welcome". Dominican Institute. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  15. ^ "Untitled Document". Retrieved 12 June 2019.
  16. ^ "Daughters of Divine Love (DDL) website". Archived from the original on 20 February 2014. Retrieved 30 May 2013.

External links[edit]