vicars apostolic

vicar apostolic

noun, plural vicars apostolic.
1.
Roman Catholic Church. a titular bishop serving either in a district where no episcopal see has been established, or in one where the succession of bishops has been interrupted.
2.
Ecclesiastical History. an archbishop, bishop, or other ecclesiastic to whom the pope delegated a portion of his jurisdiction.

Origin:
1760–70

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World English Dictionary
vicar apostolic
 
n
RC Church a titular bishop having jurisdiction in non-Catholic or missionary countries where the normal hierarchy has not yet been established

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