535 m (1,755 ft)
Province of Catanzaro
Fieri di Belcastro
Thursday 5:02 AM
| 7°C, Wind NW at 10 km/h, 49% Humidity|
Belcastro (Latin Bellicastrum) is a comune, former bishopric and present Latin Catholic titular see in the province of Catanzaro, in the Calabria region of southern Italy.
The small town of Belcastro is situated on a rocky spur crowned by a Norman-style castle that belonged to the counts of Aquino and that some propose as the birthplace of Saint Thomas Aquinas, more commonly taken to have been born in the castle of Roccasecca, near Aquino itself. After being for some centuries a fief of the counts of Aquino, it passed in 1300 into the possession of Robert of Anjou, who changed its name from Geneocastro to Belcastro as a tribute to the beauty of the surroundings. In the 15th century it was given the title of city. Its population is now reduced to about 1400 (2013).
The town was the seat of a [Roman Catholic Diocese of Belcastro|diocese of Belcastro]] from at least 1122, suffragan of the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Santa Severina, but the earliest bishop whose name is known is of the early 13th century. By the papal bull De utiliori of Pope Pius VII of 27 June 1828, the diocese was suppressed, its territory being incorporated (without its title) into its Metropolitan's archdiocese of Santa Severina.
No longer a residential bishopric, the diocese, known in Latin as Bellicastrum, is today listed by the Catholic Church as a titular see since its nominal restoration as a titular bishopric in 1968.
It has had the following incumbents of the lowest (episcopal) and intermediary (archiepiscopal) ranks :Titular Archbishop Felicissimo Stefano Tinivella, Friars Minor O.F.M. (1968.07.06 – 1970.12.12)
Titular Bishop José Gottardi Cristelli, Salesians (S.D.B.) (1972.03.01 – 1985.06.05)
Titular Archbishop Pietro Sambi (1985.10.10 – 2011.07.27)
Titular Archbishop Julien Ries (2012.01.23 – 2012.02.18) (later Cardinal)
Titular Archbishop José Rodríguez Carballo (2013.04.06 – ...), O.F.M., Secretary of the Roman Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and for Societies of Apostolic Life