santamariamaggiore- santamariamaggiore-

The Chapter

Organized like a sacerdotal college, the Chapter is composed by a Cardinal-Archpriest, and 12 Canons, all of whom are appointed by the Pope.

Under the direction of the Cardinal-Archpriest, the Canons, the Honorary Canons and the Coadjutors who make up the Liberian Presbyterate, carry out the Basilica’s liturgical functions and pastoral work, in an effort to attend to the faithful and to foster their active participation.

Due to an ancient honour, His Majesty the King of Spain is the Protocanon of the Liberian Chapter.

The existence of the Liberian Chapter was first documented in the 12th century, while the first codes of the Liberian Chapter date back to the 13th century: 1262, 1266 and 1271.

The clergy that served at the Basilica at the time was made up of Clerics in 1153 and, from 1292 onwards, of Canons. Starting as far back as 1153, there was also an Archipresbyter.
The earliest documents reveal nothing about the internal organization of the Chapter. However, documents from the 14th century reveal that initial efforts were being made to establish fixed rules that were fit to be submitted to the Pope for approval.

The earliest editions established the ancient form of the Liberian Statute. It is the oldest preserved example of a Roman Capitular Statute.

In the 12th and 13th centuries, the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary Major continued to be an active place of worship, where Marian feasts were celebrated with great solemnity and where new devotions flourished beside the old traditions: the Lenten Stations of the Cross, worship of the Saints and, above all, veneration of the icon Salus Populi Romani.

Over the years, the Basilica has preserved some medieval missals (from the 12th and 15th centuries), the Santorale Liberiano and interesting “Calendars” of the time, which are currently stored in the Vatican Apostolic Archives.

On 19 March 2024, the Solemnity of St. Joseph, the Holy Father approved the new Statute and Regulation for the Chapter of the Papal Basilica of St. Mary Major (Statute and Regulation).




Archpriest of the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary Major

H.E. Cardinal Stanisław Ryłko


Born on 4 July 1945 in Andrychów, Poland, he was ordained a priest on 30 March 1969 by Archbishop of Krakow, Cardinal Karol Wojtyła. Between 1972 and 1978, he studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University, where he obtained his first license. He then went on to obtain a Doctorate Degree from the Faculty of Social Sciences. In 1979, he was appointed Secretary of the Commission for the Apostolate of the Laity of the Episcopal Conference of Poland. In 1987, he was called to serve at the Holy See as office head of the Youth Section of the Pontifical Council for the Laity. In the five years in which he covered this role, he worked on the organization of World Youth Day in Santiago de Campostela (1989) and World Youth Day in Częstochowa (1991). He was then transferred to the Polish Section of the Secretariat of State. On 20 December 1995, he was appointed Secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Laity and on 6 January 1996, he was ordained a bishop by Saint John Paul II and assigned the titular See of Novica. On 4 October 2003, he was appointed Archbishop and President of the Pontifical Council for the Laity. He was created a cardinal of the Holy Roman Church by Pope Benedict XVI, during the ordinary public consistory of 24 November 2007. On 28 December 2016, Pope Francis appointed him Archpriest of the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary Major.




Coadjutor Archpriest of the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary Major

S.E.R. The Most Rev. Rolandas Makrickas 


Born in Biržai, Lithuania, on 31 January 1972. He was ordained a priest on 20 July 1996 for the Diocese of Panevėžys. From 1996 to 2001 he was Under-Secretary of the Lithuanian Bishops’ Conference and Head of the National Committee of the Great Jubilee of 2000. He obtained his Doctorate in Ecclesiastical History from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome in 2004. He entered the Holy See’s Diplomatic Service on 1 July 2006 and has served in Pontifical Missions in Georgia, Sweden, the United States of America and Gabon, and in the Secretariat of State, Section for General Affairs. From 14 December 2021 to 19 March 2024, he was served as the Extraordinary Commissioner for the Chapter and Papal Basilica of Saint Mary Major. On 11 February 2023, he was appointed titular Archbishop of Tolentino, and shortly thereafter, on 15 April, he received episcopal consecration in the Basilica of Saint Mary Major in Rome, from His Eminence Pietro Cardinal Parolin, Secretary of State of His Holiness. On 19 March 2024, he was appointed as Coadjutor Archpriest, with right of succession, of the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary Major.



Protocanon: His Majesty the King of Spain



(In order of the Bull of Appointment)

  1.     H.E. The Most Rev. Iryney Bilyk, Bishop Emeritus of Buchach of the Ukraines – Ukraine
  2.     Mgr. Renato Volante, Diocese of Trieste – Italy
  3.     Mgr. Giuseppe Croce, Diocese of Rieti – Italy
  4.     Mgr. Michele Prattichizzo, Diocese of San Severo – Italy
  5.     H.E. The Most Rev. Antonius Aziz Mina, Bishop Emeritus of Guizeh (Coptic) – Egypt
  6.     Mgr. Josè Jaime Brosel Gavilá – Metropolitan Archdiocese of Valencia – Spain
  7.     Mgr. Antonio Manuel Machado De Saldanha e Albuquerque – Diocese of Angra – Portugal
  8.     Mgr. Giuseppe Banfi – Society of Apostolic Life: Fraternity of the Sons of the Cross – Italy
  9.     Mgr. Michael Kahle – Metropolitan Archdiocese of Cologne – Germany
  10.     Mgr. Eamonn Mc Laughlin – Diocese of Raphoe – Ireland
  11.     Mgr. Ivan Ricupero – Metropolitan Archdiocese of Syracuse – Italy
  12.     Mgr. Massimo Muccillo – Metropolitan Archdiocese of Campobasso-Bojano – Italy


Benedictine Canon

    Msgr. Riccardo Battocchio


Honorary Canons

(In order of the Bull of Appointment)

  1.     Mgr. Valentin Miserachs Grau
  2.     Mgr. Michal Jagosz
  3.     Mgr. Giuseppe Kral
  4.     Mgr. Juan Esquerda Bifet
  5.     Mgr. Vincenzo Ferrara
  6.     Mgr. Emilio Silvestrini
  7.     Mgr. Paul B. McInerny
  8.     Mgr. Ciro Bovenzi
  9.     H.E. The Most Rev. Piero Marini
  10.     Mgr. Luigi Veturi
  11.     Mgr. Mieczyslaw Josef Niepsuj
  12.     H.E. The Most Rev. Francesco Micciché

  13.     H.E. The Most Rev. Diego Coletti
  14.     Mgr. Giacomo Martinelli
  15.     Mgr. Gino di Ciocco
  16.     Fr. João Scognamiglio Cla' Dias
  17.     Mgr. Ennio Apeciti



(In order of the Bull of Appointment)

  1.     Mgr. Adriano Paccanelli
  2.     Mgr. Francesco Maria Tasciotti
  3.     Fr. Marco Cocuzza
  4.     Mgr. Vittorio Formenti

Honorary Coadjutor

            Mgr. Giovanni Celi