This is a list of Lutheran dioceses and archdioceses currently active, grouped by national (or regional) church, and showing the titles of the bishops of those dioceses. Where relevant, the Metropolitan bishop or Primate (bishop) is listed first. As in other Christian denominations, many Lutheran Metropolitan and Primate bishops bear the title Archbishop.
This list does not contain historical or defunct dioceses, although links are provided (at the end of the list) to former Lutheran dioceses of particular historical note.
This list is solely for dioceses of those Lutheran churches which have retained, or established, episcopal polity. There are also many Lutheran churches with congregational polity, which do not have bishops, or who use the title bishop for their presiding officer, but in a sense other than that of the historic episcopate.
An established state church in Denmark and Greenland. The Bishop of Copenhagen is the Primate (Primus inter pares), but not a Metropolitan, having no actual jurisdiction superior to that of any other diocesan bishop.
The Archbishop holds authority throughout Estonia, assisted by Bishops of regional dioceses, including the Extra-Estonian Diocese, which had been a separate church until 2010. The College of Bishops is usually larger, due to the practice of giving most retiring Bishops the status of Bishop Emeritus (or Archbishop Emeritus).
Formerly a diocese of the Church of Denmark, it is now an autonomous church consisting of a single diocese.
One of two state sanctioned national churches in Finland. The Archbishop of Turku is the Primate. In addition to the dioceses listed below there is also a "Military Bishopric", although the Ordinary is not required to be in Bishop's Orders, and may be a senior priest.
A small group of former members of ELCF have formed an independent conservative mission diocese, the Evangelical Lutheran Mission Diocese of Finland. It is headed by its own bishop, but is not recognised by the ELCF, the Finnish Government, or the Lutheran World Federation.
An autonomous church structured as a single diocese.
The church is led by a Presiding Bishop, who is elected from amongst the diocesan bishops, and remains a diocesan bishop in addition to his role as Primate.
Since 1801 the Church of Iceland has been united as a single diocese. Since that year, the Bishops of Skálholt and Hólar have been suffragans to the Bishop of Iceland. They retain their respective cathedras (seats) in Skálholt Cathedral and Hólar Cathedral. The Bishop of Iceland's cathedra is located in Reykjavík Cathedral.
The Council of Bishops (of which all Latvian bishops and archbishops are members) is the highest authority in the church; the archbishop is Primate and is sometimes styled Archbishop of Riga and Latvia.
An autonomous church formed as a single diocese, and operating worldwide. Originally for Latvians overseas, the church now has congregations in Latvia also, where its inclusive ordination policy contrasts with the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Latvia, which ordains only men.
An autonomous church structured as a single diocese.
Changes in 2012 and 2016 have given the church increased autonomy from the state, although it remains partially state-funded. The Preses (Presiding Bishop) is the primate and metropolitan and also has Ordinary jurisdiction over the cathedral deanery in Nidaros (Trondheim), notwithstanding the existence of a Diocesan Bishop of Nidaros (see below).
The Primate is styled Bishop of the Church and is based in Warsaw.
With its origins in several separate denominations within the former Soviet Union, this has been a united church since 1999. The Primate is based in St Petersburg.
A single-diocese church. Unlike ELCROS (above) the ELCI does not ordain women.
The largest Lutheran church in Europe. The Archbishop of Uppsala is the primate and metropolitan; although also the Ordinary (diocesan bishop) of Uppsala, much of this work is legally delegated to the Bishop of Uppsala, a suffragan bishop who functions as the effective diocesan bishop. There are 13 dioceses (listed below). Additionally the Church of Sweden Abroad forms a 14th jurisdiction, consisting of 45 churches, in 3 deaneries, all outside Sweden; it is under the episcopal oversight of the Bishop of Visby.
VELKD, established in 1948. All member churches are also members of the all-Protestant umbrella EKD. Only Lutheran member churches are listed below.
Established in 2012 from unions of several older denominations, and also part of the VELKD, but consisting of multiple internal dioceses. The State Bishop or Presiding Bishop is in overall charge. There are currently two Bishops of Mecklenburg and Pomerania (located respectively at Greifswald and Schwerin), but this is a temporary arrangement following mergers of denominations.
A group of Indian bishoprics with very different origins and founders, which retain their autonomy, but have united into a single denomination.
A single-diocese church operating in Jordan, Israel, and Palestine.
The ELCA does not have dioceses in the usual sense. However, its "synods" increasingly closely resemble a diocese in all but name, particularly since the decision in 2000 to appoint all new bishops within the historic apostolic succession, with the laying-on of hands by at least three current bishops.
The Archbishop is the primate, and is also responsible for a small diocese, comprising his cathedral in Nairobi and its immediate surrounding precincts.
Namibia's three Lutheran denominations have a long history of co-operation together, and in 2007 formed the United Church Council as a parent body, within which they are working towards full visible unity as a single church.
Working predominantly in the north of the country.
Working predominantly in the south of the country.
Working nationwide amongst the German-speaking community.
The Archbishop is not part of a formally constituted diocese, although he holds jurisdiction over a national arch-cathedral in Numan, which is also the location of the church's administrative headquarters.
The largest Lutheran church in southern Africa is headed by a Presiding Bishop. It operates in South Africa, Botswana, Swaziland, and Lesotho. In addition to the dioceses listed below there is also a Lesotho mission area, not yet large enough to be formed into a diocese.
The Presiding Bishop is the primate, and may be elected from amongst all the diocesan bishops. There is no fixed see for the Presiding Bishop.