From the earliest church to present, literally hundreds of thousands of candidates have been ordained through the laying on of hands, conferred by a bishop or bishops of their particular denomination of the Church. In that act of laying on of hands, the sacrament of holy orders is conferred. The authority to carry out that sacrament was imparted to the bishop by the reception of authority from another bishop who was also empowered an authorized bishops and so on right back to the earliest records. This is apostolic succession. In that sacrament of holy orders, every deacon, priest and bishop is filled with the power of the holy spirit to carry out the task of ministry and is also given the empowerment of the Church itself to carry on the sacred work that these orders each represent.
For us as members of the Old Catholic Church, we can wholeheartedly tell people about our validity and our pedigree as we speak to people about our ordinations and our church. Here is the lineage of the CCCC.
The records of Episcopal Consecration for all Roman Catholic Bishops in this Line of Succession, prior to His Eminence, Scipione Cardinal Rebiba are located in the Archives of the Vatican. All of the Popes since December 8, 1700, except for two, trace their Apostolic succession from the same His Eminence, Scipione Cardinal Rebiba.
Dates recorded indicate the Date of Episcopal Consecration.
GIOVANNI PIETRO CARAFFA, founder of the Theatines and later Pope Paul IV, is believed to have consecrated
SCIPIONE CARDINAL REBIBA, Archbishop of Albano; Prelate to the Papal Court consecrated Bishop – March 14, 1541
GIULIO CARDINAL SANTORO, Archbishop of Saint Severine; Prelate to the Papal Court – March 12, 1566
GIROLAMO CARDINAL BERNERI, O.P., Bishop of Albano; Prelate to the Papal Court – September 7, 1586
GALEAZZO SANVITALE, Archbishop of Bari; Prelate to the Papal Court – April 4, 1604
LUDOVICO CARDINAL LUDOVISI, Camerlengo pf the Holy Roman Church; Prelate to the Papal Court – May 2, 1621
LUIGI CARDINAL CAETANI, Titular Patriarch of Antioch; Prelate to the Papal Court – June 12, 1622
GIOVANNI-BATTISTA SCANNAROLO, Titular Bishop of Tyre and Sidon; later Bishop of Sidonia; Prelate to the Papal Court – October 7, 1630
Antonio Cardinal Barberini, Consecrated October 24, 1655. From 1657 until his death in 1671 he was Archbishop of Rheims.
Charles Maurice de Tellieron November 12, 1677.
In 1677, by the orders of Pope Clement X, De Tellier consecrated to the Sacred Episcopate, Jaques Benigne Bossueton September 21, 1670.
James Coyon de Mattignonon April 16, 1693.
Dominique Marie Varleton February 12, 1719.
Peter John Meindaertson October 7, 1739. He was the first Vicar Apostolic of Utrecht. From him autocephaly came into existence.
John Van Stiphoutas Bishop of Haarlem on July 11, 1745.
Walter Michael Van Nieuwenhuizenas Archbishop of Utrecht on February 7, 1768.
Adrian Brockmanas Bishop of Haarlem on June 21, 1778.
John James Van Rhijnas Archbishop of Utrecht on July 5, 1797.
Gisbert de Jongas bishop of Deventer on November 7, 1805.
John Bon as Bishop of Haarlem on April 22, 1819.
John Van Santen as Archbishop of Utrecht on June 14, 1825
Herman Heykamp Bishop of Deventer on July 17, 1853
Gaspart John Rinkel Bishop of Haarlem on August 11, 1873
Gerardus Gul on May 11 1892. He had been the parish priest of Hilversum, and was consecrated at that parish by Bishop Rinkel, assisted by Cornelius Diependaal, Bishop of Deventer, and Josef Reinken, Bishop of Bonn, Germany. The following year Bishop Gul succeeded as Archbishop of Utrecht. Archbishop Gul Bishop Francis Hodur, first Bishop of the Polish National Catholic Church in 1907 at Utrecht Holland. Archbishop Gul consecrated to the sacred Episcopacy the English Lord:
Arnold Harris Matthew, Earl of Landaff, on April 28, 1909, as Regionary Bishop of the Catholic Church which is in the Kingdom of Great Britain. Bishop Matthew was consecrated at the Cathedral of Saint Gertrude, Utrecht, by Dutch Archbishop Geradus Gul, assisted by James John Van Theil, Bishop of Haarlem, Nicholas Bartholomew Peter Spit, Bishop of Deventer, and Joseph Demmel, Regionary Bishop of Germany. Bishop Matthew had been ordained to the priesthood by ArchbishopEyre at Saint Andrew’s Cathedral, Glasgow, on June 24, 1877. He had received Doctor of Divinity degree from Pope Pius IX. (More on Arnold Harris Matthew)
Archbishop Matthew consecrated to the sacred Episcopacy Prince de Landas Berghes de Rache, Duc de St. Winock on June 29, 1913, in London England. An Austrian citizen, Bishop De Landas journeyed to the United States when World War I commenced. It was through this Austrian nobleman that apostolic succession was carried to the North American Continent. Before he retired to an Augustinian monastery at Villanova, Pennsylvania, the Prince Bishop consecrated several bishops. On October 3, 1916, at St. Dunstan’s Abby Chapel, in WaukeganIllinois, the Austrian Prince Bishop consecrated to the sacred Episcopate, Abbot William Henry Brothers. Then, assisted by Bishop Brothers, Bishop de Landas consecrated to the sacred Episcopate:
Carmel Henry Carfora, a priest of the Old Roman Catholic Church, who was consecrated as anArchbishop for Canada on October 4, 1916. This consecration took place at St. Dunan’s Abby inWaukegan, Il. The Most Reverend Carfora, who later became the Archbishop of the North American Old Catholic Church, had been originally consecrated in the Jacobite succession in 1912 by Paola Miraglia-Gulotti. This Episcopal consecration was received at Piacenza, Italy on May 6, 1900, at the hands of Timotheus Vilatte. The Right Reverend Michael Francis Donahue on 3 November 1946
The Right Reverend George Frank Davis on 22 April 1950
The Reverend Father Robert Ritchie on 5 March 1962
The Most Reverend David Charles Thomson on 9 October 1988
The Most Reverend Arthur Keating on 27 September 1998
The Most Reverend Patricia Davies — 2004 With Archbishop Keating’s proxy
The Most Reverend Deborah Vaughan — May 2010
More than 91% of the more than 4,900 Roman Catholic Bishops alive today, trace their episcopal lineage back to one bishop who was appointed in 1541 – Scipione Rebiba. This large number can be explained in great part by the intense sacramental activity of Pope Benedict XIII, who consecrated 139 bishops during his episcopate and pontificate, including many cardinals, papal diplomats, and bishops of important dioceses, who in turn, consecrated many other bishops. Today all of the Old Catholic/Old Roman Catholic bishops derived through the Utrecht succession, also share this exact same ecclesiastical progenitor, as the source of their episcopal lineage in the Apostolic Succession, further demonstrating our common origins with our Roman Catholic brother bishops, and solidifying our unquestionable membership and continuity in the same Catholic Faith and Church.