Episcopal Diocese of Southwest Florida

Diocese of Southwest Florida
CountryUnited States
Ecclesiastical provinceProvince IV
Congregations78 (2021)
Members25,934 (2021)
DenominationEpiscopal Church
EstablishedOctober 16, 1969
CathedralCathedral of St Peter
Current leadership
BishopDouglas F. Scharf
J. Michael Garrison
(Assisting Bishop)
Barry Robert Howe
(Assisting Bishop)
Location of the Diocese of Southwest Florida
Location of the Diocese of Southwest Florida

The Episcopal Diocese of Southwest Florida is a diocese of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America (ECUSA) in Florida which extends from Marco Island on the south, to Brooksville on the north, and inland to Plant City, Arcadia and LaBelle on the east. As part of the ECUSA, the diocese is a constituent member of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

Major cities in the diocese are Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Fort Myers, Sarasota, and Bradenton. The diocese includes the western half of Hendry County, the mainland portion of Monroe County, and all of the counties of Hernando, Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, DeSoto, Charlotte, Lee, and Collier.

The diocese is a part of Province IV of the Episcopal Church, historically known as the Province of Sewanee.[1] The current Diocesan Bishop of Southwest Florida is Douglas Scharf. The cathedral church of the diocese is Cathedral Church of St. Peter in St. Petersburg. The diocesan offices are in Parrish, Florida on the campus of the DaySpring Episcopal Center. The diocese currently comprises 78 churches.[2]


The Diocese of Southwest Florida was created in 1969 when the Diocese of South Florida was split to form the dioceses of Central Florida, Southeast Florida and Southwest Florida.

Historic church buildings in the Diocese include Ft. Myers Beach's St. Raphael's, St. James House of Prayer, and St. Andrew's, Tampa, Cathedral Church of St. Peter, St. Petersburg, Sarasota's Church of the Redeemer and DaySpring Episcopal Center's St. Thomas Chapel, formerly the Church of the Holy Spirit, Safety Harbor.

Bishops of the diocese[edit]

The Bishops of the Diocese of Southwest Florida are:

  1. 1969–1975: William L. Hargrave
  2. 1975–1988: Emerson Paul Haynes
  3. 1989–1997: Rogers Sanders Harris
  4. 1997–2007: John Bailey Lipscomb
  5. 2007–2022: Dabney Tyler Smith
  6. 2022–present: Douglas Frederick Scharf

NOTE: For earlier bishops, see the Episcopal Diocese of South Florida


In accordance with the usage in the ECUSA, the diocese is divided into seven deaneries as follows:

  • Clearwater Deanery: Clearwater, Dunedin, Hudson, Indian Rocks Beach, Largo, New Port Richey, Palm Harbor, Safety Harbor, Seminole, Spring Hill and Tarpon Springs. The Rev. Randy Hehr, Dean.
  • Fort Myers Deanery: Cape Coral, Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, LaBelle, Lehigh Acres, North Fort Myers, Pine Island and Sanibel. The Rev. Dr. Ellen Sloan, Dean.
  • Manasota Deanery: Anna Maria, Arcadia, Bradenton, Longboat Key, Osprey, Palmetto and Sarasota: The Very Rev. Fredrick A. Robinson, Dean.
  • Naples Deanery: Bonita Springs, Marco Island and Naples. The Rev Edward Gleason, Dean.
  • St. Petersburg Deanery: Pinellas Park, St. Petersburg and St. Pete Beach: The Rev. Stephen B. Morris, Dean.
  • Tampa Deanery: Brooksville, Dade City, Plant City, Ruskin, Tampa, Temple Terrace, Valrico and Zephyrhills. The Rev. Charles Connelly, Dean.
  • Venice Deanery: Boca Grande, Englewood, North Port, Osprey, Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Venice. The Rev. Michelle Robertshaw, Dean.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Province IV of the Episcopal Church. Retrieved March 3, 2010.
  2. ^ The Episcopal Church Annual (2007) Harrisburg: Morehouse Church Resources, pp. 359-361.


  • Cushman, Joseph D., Jr., A Goodly Heritage: The Episcopal Church in Florida, 1821-1892, Gainesville: University of Florida Press (1965)

External links[edit]

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