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In the Catholic Church, an exemption is the full or partial release of an ecclesiastical person, corporation, or institution from the authority of the ecclesiastical superior next higher in rank.  For example, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Strasbourg, and the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem are exempt, being directly subject to the Holy See.
See List of Catholic dioceses (structured view) for a list of exempt entities.
Originally, according to canon law, all the residents of a diocese, as well as all diocesan institutions, were under the authority of the local bishop. Following complaints by monasteries that bishops treated them oppressively, they were taken under the protection of synods, princes and popes. Papal protection often evolved later into exemption from episcopal authority. From the 11th century onward, papal activity in the matter of Church reform has often been the source of exemptions. 
Eventually, not only individual monasteries, but also entire orders, were granted exemption from the authority of the local bishop. Exemptions were also granted to cathedral chapters, collegiate chapters, parishes, communities, ecclesiastical institutions, and even single individuals. In some cases, monasteries and churches which could document that from time immemorial they had never been subjected to the authority of a bishop could have their claim to exemption confirmed. Under these circumstances, the diocesan administration of the bishops was frequently crippled. Complaints and conflicts were frequent and councils were called upon to clarify and circumscribe the notion and scope of exemption. 
Some bishops gained exemption from the authority of their metropolitan (archbishop), either at their own request or by decision of the Holy See. However, those exempt bishops were required to choose an ecclesiastical province and attend the provincial synods. 
In the case of monasteries and churches, exemption is known as either passiva or activa, the latter being the most extensive. Abbots known canonically as proelati nullius cum territorio separato exercised quasi episcopal rights over a clearly defined territory entirely distinct from the diocese.  There was disagreement as to whether or not such exempt abbots could be required to attend provincial synods as their presence might eventually jeopardize the right of exemption of their monasteries. 
The exemption enjoyed by female orders and religious houses was more restricted. The bishop or his representative presided over the election of the abbesses, prioresses, or superiors and they continued to have the right to visit canonically these houses. They also retained the right to supervise the observance of the clausura (cloister). 
Abbot is an ecclesiastical title given to the male head of a monastery in various Western religious traditions, including Christianity. The office may also be given as an honorary title to a clergyman who is not the head of a monastery. The female equivalent is abbess.
In church governance, a diocese or bishopric is the ecclesiastical district under the jurisdiction of a bishop.
A synod is a council of a Christian denomination, usually convened to decide an issue of doctrine, administration or application. The word synod comes from the Greek: σύνοδος [ˈsinoðos] meaning "assembly" or "meeting" and is analogous with the Latin word concilium meaning "council". Originally, synods were meetings of bishops, and the word is still used in that sense in Catholicism, Oriental Orthodoxy and Eastern Orthodoxy. In modern usage, the word often refers to the governing body of a particular church, whether its members are meeting or not. It is also sometimes used to refer to a church that is governed by a synod.
A prelate is a high-ranking member of the Christian clergy who is an ordinary or who ranks in precedence with ordinaries. The word derives from the Latin praelatus, the past participle of praeferre, which means 'carry before', 'be set above or over' or 'prefer'; hence, a prelate is one set over others.
An ecclesiastical court, also called court Christian or court spiritual, is any of certain courts having jurisdiction mainly in spiritual or religious matters. In the Middle Ages, these courts had much wider powers in many areas of Europe than before the development of nation states. They were experts in interpreting canon law, a basis of which was the Corpus Juris Civilis of Justinian, which is considered the source of the civil law legal tradition.
In Christian churches with episcopal polity, the rank of metropolitan bishop, or simply metropolitan, pertains to the diocesan bishop or archbishop of a metropolis.
An ecclesiastical province is one of the basic forms of jurisdiction in Christian Churches with traditional hierarchical structure, including Western Christianity and Eastern Christianity. In general, an ecclesiastical province consists of several dioceses, one of them being the archdiocese, headed by a metropolitan bishop or archbishop who has ecclesiastical jurisdiction over all other bishops of the province.
The hierarchy of the Catholic Church consists of its bishops, priests, and deacons. In the ecclesiological sense of the term, "hierarchy" strictly means the "holy ordering" of the Church, the Body of Christ, so to respect the diversity of gifts and ministries necessary for genuine unity.
The Archdiocese of Wrocław is a Latin Church ecclesiastical territory or archdiocese of the Catholic Church centered in the city of Wrocław in Poland. From its founding as a bishopric in 1000 until 1821, it was under the Archbishopric of Gniezno in Greater Poland. From 1821 to 1930 it was subjected directly to the Apostolic See. Between 1821 and 1972 it was officially known as (Arch)Diocese of Breslau.
In the Catholic Church, a canonical visitation is the act of an ecclesiastical superior who in the discharge of his office visits persons or places with a view to maintaining faith and discipline and of correcting abuses. A person delegated to carry out such a visitation is called a visitor. When, in exceptional circumstances, the Holy See delegates an apostolic visitor "to evaluate an ecclesiastical institute such as a seminary, diocese, or religious institute [...] to assist the institute in question to improve the way in which it carries out its function in the life of the Church," this is known as an apostolic visitation.
Cathedraticum is a specified sum of money to be paid annually toward a bishop. It is a mark of honour and a sign of subjection to the cathedral church, from which its name is derived.
The Diocese of Gozo is a Latin bishopric (diocese) of the Catholic Church in Malta, and the only suffragan in the ecclesiastical province of the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Malta, together covering the insular state.
In the Catholic Church, a bishop is an ordained minister who holds the fullness of the sacrament of holy orders and is responsible for teaching doctrine, governing Catholics in his jurisdiction, sanctifying the world and representing the Church. Catholics trace the origins of the office of bishop to the apostles, who it is believed were endowed with a special charism and office by the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Catholics believe this special charism and office has been transmitted through an unbroken succession of bishops by the laying on of hands in the sacrament of holy orders.
The Holy Synod of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria is the highest Orthodox authority in the Coptic Orthodox Church. It formulates the rules and regulations regarding matters of the Church's organisation and faith.
The Prince-Bishopric of Augsburg was one of the prince-bishoprics of the Holy Roman Empire, and belonged to the Swabian Circle. It should not be confused with the larger diocese of Augsburg, over which the prince-bishop exercised only spiritual authority.
Marie Dominique Bouix was a French Jesuit canon lawyer.
In the Roman Catholic Church, a plenary council is any of various kinds of ecclesiastical synods, used when those summoned represent the whole number of bishops of some given territory. The word itself, derived from the Latin plenarium, hence concilium plenarium, also concilium plenum. Plenary councils have a legislative function that does not apply to other national synods.
The canon law of the Roman Catholic Church recognizes various meanings of the term emancipation.
The apostolic constitution Romanos Pontifices, by Pope Leo XIII, was issued 8 May 1881, and defined the relations in England and Scotland between bishops and members of religious institutes. This constitution was later extended to the United States, to Canada, to South America, to the Philippine Islands, and quite generally to missionary countries.
A rector is, in an ecclesiastical sense, a cleric who functions as an administrative leader in some Christian denominations. In contrast, a vicar is also a cleric but functions as an assistant and representative of an administrative leader.