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The Archbishop

The Cathedral of Santiago is the mother church of the Archdiocese of Compostela. It is the seat of its Archbishop, and this is the reason for the name of the cathedral. It owes it singularity to the housing of the tomb of the Apostle Saint James, which as of the 9th century turned it into one of the most important sanctuaries of Christendom, receiving pilgrims from all over the world.

It is, above all, a house of prayer and the centre of sacramental life, which fosters the reconciliation with God through the sacrament of penitence and the growth of Christian life through the Eucharist. Its context is full of historical echoes and palpitations.

Don Julián Barrio Barrio

has been Arzobispo de Santiago de Compostela since 1996.

Don Jesús Fernández González

has been Obispo Auxiliar de Santiago de Compostela since 2014.


The Chapter, as a college of priests who execute, together with the archbishop and the universal Church, their priestly ministry in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela by serving the People of God, has the unique purpose of being the keeper of the relics of the Apostle Saint James.

Its ordinary functions also include:

  • Preparing and celebrating the liturgical acts in the Basilica.
  • Solemnise Sunday and festive days.
  • Celebrating on a daily basis the Conventual Mass and the Liturgy of the Hours.
  • Providing adequate pastoral and liturgical attention to the faithful.
  • Promoting the cult to Saint James.
  • Undertaking the historical responsibility of the Cathedral: origin and culmination of the Way of Saint James.
  • Welcoming and encouraging pilgrims.
  • Fostering historical, cultural and artistic studies related to the Saint James tradition.

Chapter of the Catedral de Santiago

  • Ilmo. Sr. Don Segundo Leonardo Pérez López, Deán Presidente
  • M. I. Sr. Don José Fernández Lago, Lectoral
  • M. I. Sr. Don Manuel Silva Vaamonde
  • M. I. Sr. Don Antonio Suárez Carneiro, Canónigo Cantor
  • M. I. Sr. Don Ramiro Calvo Otero
  • M. I. Sr. Don Víctor Benedicto Maroño Pena, Doctoral
  • M. I. Sr. Don Salvador Domato Búa
  • M. I. Sr. Don Luis Otero Outes
  • M. I. Sr. Don Daniel Carlos Lorenzo Santos
  • M. I. Sr. Don Elisardo Temperan Villaverde, Prefecto de Ceremonias

Emeritus Canons:

  • M. I. Sr. Don José María Díaz Fernández


Nota de los obispos de la Provincia Eclesiástica de Santiago de Compostela sobre las nuevas medidas en los actos religiosos ante la expansión del “coronavirus”

The Cathedral of Santiago is a sanctuary that is open all year round (9:00 am to 8:00 pm).

Due to restoration works inside the Cathedral, masses are celebrated in other churches in the city:

-Iglesia de San Francisco: Daily Pilgrim’s Mass – 12:00 am noon

-Iglesia de Santa María Salomé:

     From Monday to Friday: 7:30 am, 9:00 am, 10:00 am, 7:00 pm

     Saturdays: 7:30 am, 9:00 am, 10:00 am, 6:00 pm, 7:00 pm

     Sundays: 7:30 am, 9:00 am, 10:00 am, 1:00 pm, 6:00 pm, 7:00 pm

-Chapel of la Corticela: Every day – 11:00 am

Church of Las Huérfanas, every day, from 10 am to 1:30 pm and from 4 pm to 7 pm. At 6:40 pm Holy Rosary and  Blessing

Church of San Fernando: from Monday to Friday, from 9:30 am to 8 pm.

-Messe in deutscher Sprahe. Täglich, 8 uhr [Mai – Oktober].

Kirche von San Fiz de Solovio.

-Msza po polsku. pn-pt 9:30 [lipiec – wrzesień].

Kościół San Fiz de Solovio

-Messe en français. Tous les jours, 8:00 h [Mai – Octobre].

Chapelle du Centro Internacional de Acogida al Peregrino

-Holy Mass in English language: every day, 9:30 am [From March to November].

Chapel of the Pilgrim’s Reception Office

-Santa Messa in lingua italiana. Da lunedì a sabato, alle 10:30 [maggio – ottobre]

Chiesa di San Fiz de Solovio.



*Taizé Prayer for pilgrims, Spanish and English language, at 4:30 pm, Chapel of the Pilgrim’s Reception Office.

*Masses for groups are in the Chapel of the Pilgrim’s Reception Office (More info at misasprivadas@catedraldesantiago.es).



The Chapter of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela offers the possibility of celebrating a Mass in the Basilica of the Apostle Saint James. To do so, it is necessary to make a formal request by sending an email to secretario@catedraldesantiago.es specifying the reason for holding the Mass, and making a donation or stipend for the amount of 10€, or the customary amount given in each country:
Entidad: SCH – IBAN:  ES97 0049 2584 90 2214012533 – BIC/SWIFT: BSCHESMMXXX
(Decree for parish fees and offerings)


The Sacrament of Confession is administered in

San Francisco – Santa María Salomé – San Fiz de Solovio – Chapel of Ánimas

and in the chapel of Pilgrim’s Office

Available in various languages.


[NOTICE: Due to restoration works inside the Cathedral, until further notice, there will be no Botafumeiro ceremony]

The Botafumeiro (“censer” in Galician) is one of the most famous and popular symbols of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. It is a large thurible that hangs by means of a system of pulleys from the main dome of the Cathedral and swings toward the side naves. It takes eight men to move it, who are known as “tiraboleiros”. It weighs 53 kg and measures 1.50 metres; it hangs from a height of 20 metres and can pick up great speed.

The Botafumeiro is used for liturgical reasons, in the same way as a priest would use a censer at the altar. It operates during the Cathedral’s main solemnities during the entrance procession or at the end of the Eucharist. The purpose of this great censer is to symbolise the true attitude of the believer. In the same way that the smoke from the incense rises to the top of the temple’s naves, so must the prayers of the pilgrims rise to reach the heart of God. And in the same manner that the aroma of the incense perfumes the entire basilica, so must Christians, with their virtues and the testimony of their lives, impregnate with the good scent of Christ, the society that they live in.

The first documented reference to the Botafumeiro is an annotation in a page from the Codex Calixtinus, where it is referred to as “Turibulum Magnum”. Throughout history there have been several thuribles; today there are two; one made from brass dating from 1851 by José Losada, which substituted the one stolen during the French occupation and which is the one that is used normally. The second Botafumeiro is a replica in silver of the previous one and was given to the Apostle by the Provisional Second-Lieutenants in 1971. It is only placed in the cathedral’s transept when it is in use, and it is kept in the Chapter Library.

The Botafumeiro operates during the following Solemnities:

  • The Epiphany: 6 January
  • Resurrection Sunday
  • The Apparition of the Apostle-Clavijo: 23 May
  • Pentecost
  • The Martyrdom of Saint James: 25 July
  • The Assumption of Mary: 15 August
  • All Saints: 1 November
  • Christ the King
  • The Immaculate Conception: 8 December
  • Christmas: 25 December
  • Transfer of the remains of the Apostle: 30 December

The Botafumeiro can also operate for pilgrimages that have duly requested it from the Cathedral. To reserve the Botafumeiro write an email to: botafumeiro@catedraldesantiago.es.

[NOTICE: Due to restoration works inside the Cathedral, until further notice, there will be no Botafumeiro ceremony]