Episcopal Diocese of Albany

Diocese of Albany

Diœcesis Albanensis
CountryUnited States
Ecclesiastical provinceProvince II
Congregations102 (2022)
Members9,401 (2022)
DenominationEpiscopal Church
EstablishedDecember 2, 1868
CathedralCathedral of All Saints
LanguageEnglish, Spanish
Current leadership
BishopJeremiah Williamson
Location of the Diocese of Albany
Location of the Diocese of Albany

The Episcopal Diocese of Albany is a diocese of the Episcopal Church covering 19 counties in northeastern New York state. It was created in 1868 from a division of the Episcopal Diocese of New York.


Headquarters of the diocese in Albany

The Church of England arrived in 1674 with a chaplain assigned to the British military garrison at Albany. In 1704 the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel sent two missionaries to the Mohawk Valley, where the first Anglican church was erected in 1711.

In 1708 the oldest parish, St. Peter's, was founded in Albany. He extended his ministry to nearby Schenectady, and by 1763, St. George's Church was built in that town. In 1765 the last of the colonial parishes, St. John's in Johnstown, was established. By the beginning of the American Revolutionary War, Anglican missions were springing up in surrounding counties. However, the war proved disastrous to the English church, which for almost ten years after remained leaderless and disorganized.

With the formation of the Episcopal Diocese of New York in 1785 (comprising the entire state), the Church in New York began to reorganize. By 1790, during the "Second Great Awakening", expanded missionary activity begun under strong episcopal leadership was largely sustained by a vigorous laity. By 1810, 14 priests served 25 parishes in buildings made possible by grants from Trinity Parish, New York City.

In 1868, nineteen counties in the northeastern quarter of the state were organized into the Diocese of Albany. Its first bishop, William Croswell Doane, was elected in 1869 by a convention of 62 priests and 127 delegates. Doane's principles and personality had a profound and enduring effect upon the character of the Diocese of Albany. He organized the newly formed diocese after the English model with a cathedral see, and his "high church" leanings found expression in his establishment of St. Agnes School, The Child's Hospital, a community of women religious, and St. Margaret's House and Hospital for Babies.

Daniel W. Herzog was the eighth bishop of Albany.[1] During Herzog's tenure, the Diocese purchased 612 acres of land in Greenwich, New York and created the Christ the King Center.[1] In 2007, several months after his retirement, Herzog renounced his ordained ministry and was received into communion with the Roman Catholic Church. Since 2003, Herzog had been an increasingly vocal critic of some decisions of the Episcopal Church's General Convention, including its 2003 affirmation of the election of a non-celibate gay bishop, Gene Robinson, in the Diocese of New Hampshire.[2] Following a period of further reflection, Herzog rescinded his renunciation and was restored to the ministry of the Episcopal Church with effect from April 28, 2010.[3] Herzog later left the Episcopal Church again and joined the Anglican Church in North America.[1]

Presiding Bishop and Primate of the Episcopal Church of the United States Katharine Jefferts Schori visited the Episcopal Diocese of Albany in 2011.[4]

William H. Love was elected bishop coadjutor in 2006 and was installed as bishop of Albany in February 2007 following Herzog's retirement. Love was an orthodox and theologically conservative bishop.[5] In 2011, Love spoke out in opposition to the passage of same-sex marriage legislation in New York.[6] In October 2020, Love was found to have violated Episcopal Church doctrine and rules due to his unwillingness to permit same-sex unions to be blessed by clergy within the Albany diocese.[7] In response to that finding, Love resigned from his position as bishop effective February 1, 2021;[8][9] he later left the Episcopal Church altogether.[10] Four priests and four deacons left the Albany Diocese in protest following Love's departure.[11] After Love's departure, Michael G. Smith, former bishop of North Dakota, was appointed as assisting bishop while the diocese searched for a new leader.[12]

Jeremiah Williamson, is the current serving, and tenth, Bishop of Albany. His consecration as bishop occurred on February 24, 2024.[13]

Companion dioceses[edit]

List of bishops[edit]

Bishops of Albany
From Until Incumbent Notes
1869 1913 William Croswell Doane
1913 1929 Richard H. Nelson Coadjutor bishop since 1904.
1929 1949 G. Ashton Oldham Coadjutor bishop since 1922.
1949 1960 Frederick L. Barry Coadjutor bishop since 1945.
1961 1974 Allen W. Brown Suffragan bishop since 1959.
1974 1984 Wilbur E. Hogg
1984 1998 David S. Ball Coadjutor bishop since 1984.
1998 2007 Daniel W. Herzog Coadjutor bishop since 1997.
2007 2021 William H. Love[14] Coadjutor bishop since 2006.
2024 Jeremiah Williamson[13] Bishop since 2024

List of suffragan bishops[edit]

Suffragan bishops in Albany Diocese
From Until Incumbent Notes
1904 1913 Richard H. Nelson, coadjutor bishop Diocesan bishop, 1913–1929.
1922 1929 G. Ashton Oldham, coadjutor bishop Diocesan bishop, 1929–1949.
1945 1949 Frederick L. Barry, coadjutor bishop Diocesan bishop, 1949–1960.
1951 1957 David E. Richards David Emrys Richards (born January 23, 1921, Scranton, PA); translated to Central America.
1959 1961 Allen W. Brown Diocesan bishop, 1961–1974.
1963 1974 Charles B. Persell Jr. Charles Bowen Persell Junior (March 9, 1909, Lakewood, NY – September 23, 1988, Albany, NY)
1984 David S. Ball, coadjutor bishop Diocesan bishop, 1984–1998.
1997 1998 Daniel W. Herzog, coadjutor bishop Diocesan bishop, 1998–2007.
2000 2007 David Bena David John "Dave" Bena (born December 10, 1943); joined CANA.
2006 2007 William H. Love, coadjutor bishop Diocesan bishop 2007-2021.

Historic churches in the diocese[edit]

Historic churches in the diocese include:

St. George’s Episcopal Church (Schenectady New York),1735

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Moore, Kathleen (August 7, 2023). "Former Episcopal Diocese of Albany bishop, who left church over ordination of gay man, dies". Times Union.
  2. ^ "Retired Albany bishop joins Roman Catholic Church". Archived from the original on 2011-01-17. Retrieved 2010-05-05.
  3. ^ "ALBANY: Retired Albany Bishop Daniel Herzog rejoins the Episcopal Church". Archived from the original on 2010-07-05. Retrieved 2010-05-05.
  4. ^ Goot, Michael (March 14, 2011). "Bishop in visit to Albany: Be less self-absorbed; Episcopal leader is celebrant at All Saints cathedral". Daily Gazette. Retrieved March 14, 2011.
  5. ^ Biancolli, Amy (September 1, 2018). "Facing a schism: A bishop, gay marriage and the Episcopal diocese of Albany". Times Union.
  6. ^ Love, William H. (June 30, 2011). "Episcopal Albany Bishop Rejects NY Same-Sex Legislation". virtueonline.org. Retrieved 2017-09-22.
  7. ^ Gavin, Robert (October 5, 2020). "Episcopal Church rules Albany bishop violated rules in stopping same-sex marriages". Times Union.
  8. ^ Kumar, Anugrah (October 25, 2020). "Episcopal Bishop William Love announces resignation in response to hearing panel ruling". The Christian Post.
  9. ^ "Albany Episcopal bishop to resign over same-sex marriage stance". syracuse.com. October 25, 2020.
  10. ^ Goodwin, Mike (March 31, 2021). "Former Bishop William Love leaves Episcopal Church after same-sex marriage case". Times Union.
  11. ^ "Conservative Bishop to Assist in Albany During Search". August 23, 2021.
  12. ^ Petersen, Kirk (August 23, 2021). "Conservative Bishop to Assist in Albany During Search". livingchurch.org.
  13. ^ a b "Episcopal convention elects Colorado reverend for bishop". Albany Times-Union. September 9, 2023. Archived from the original on September 10, 2023. Retrieved September 10, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  14. ^ "A Brief History of the Episcopal Diocese of Albany". albanyepiscopaldiocese.org. December 24, 2008. Archived from the original on April 22, 2006. Retrieved 2017-09-22.

External links[edit]

42°40′N 73°45′W / 42.667°N 73.750°W / 42.667; -73.750