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Duties & Responsibilities of an Archbishop

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The term archbishop literally means chief bishop. This chief bishop position would be responsible for overseeing the bishops under their jurisdiction. If a bishop is comparable to a civilian regional manager, then an archbishop would easily be compared to a regional vice-president.

Selection of Clergy

One of the prime duties of the archbishop is in the selection of clergy or priests to individual churches. This assignment process is done when a new church is built or a current priest is reassigned or retires. The archbishop will call together the other bishops and look over the qualified candidates and then appoint a priest or clergy to a church in need of a new leader.


Another main duty of an archbishop is the ordination of priests and clergy who have completed seminary. This ordination procedure can vary from denomination to denomination, but applies to candidates who have attended college and graduate school for training in a particular denomination.


During religious holidays, the archbishop is the one who begins the sacrament of confirmation. This sacrament is to remember the Last Supper of Jesus Christ before he was crucified on the cross. The archbishop will also delegate other bishops to perform this duty.


The archbishop is also responsible for the discipline of the clergy, deacons, priests and bishops under his jurisdiction. This duty requires the archbishop to either remove or reassign priests from their duties and responsibilities.

Church Doctrine

The opinions and interpretation of scriptures by Christian denominations are commonly referred to as the Church Doctrine. The responsibility of ensuring this doctrine is being taught and followed in each church is one of the duties of the Archbishop.


Originally from Huntersville, W. Va., Eric Cornelison has been writing news and sports articles for more than 25 years. He now publishes travel, sports and religious articles on a variety of websites and in magazines, such as the "Red Oak Record" and "Ellis County Press." Cornelison holds a Master of Business Administration from West Virginia University and doctorate in religious theology from Rochville University.

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