All documents which regard the diocese or parishes must be protected with the greatest care. In every curia there is to be erected in a safe place a diocesan archive, or record storage area, in which instruments and written documents which pertain to the spiritual and temporal affairs of the diocese are to be safeguarded after being properly filed and diligently secured. - Canon 486, Code of Canon Law
Like any diocese, the Diocese of Providence maintains its own Archives, which consist of a miscellaneous collection of papers, manuscripts, correspondence, printed material, books and ledgers, diocesan newspapers and directories, photographs and memorabilia preserved and organized from the working documents of the Diocese. Few items predate 1872 – when the Diocese was founded — and little remains from the nineteenth century, but the documents of the diocesan bishops (the Acta) are available in good quantity, although few personal papers survive.
The Archives is not a library . They are private, and no right to access exists. However, whenever possible, we will try to accommodate individual requests.
The Archives have three main functions:
Please note: sacramental records (i.e., baptismal and marriage certificates) are maintained at the individual parishes, and not in the Archives.