a Bishop
a Bishop

Have you ever run into a Bishop in the grocery store, and been uncertain of how you ought to greet him? When addressing dignitaries or religious figures, there are three primary modes of address to keep in mind - in writing, verbally in formal circumstances, and verbally in informal circumstances. This how-to article will help you to correctly address and/or greet a Roman Catholic bishop.

First, there is the way that you would address them in writing, e.g. a formal letter. This tends to be the longest of the honorifics. In the case of a Roman Catholic bishop, you would address the letter to "The Most Reverend So-and-So."

Second, there is the way that you would address them verbally in formal circumstances. In the case of a Roman Catholic bishop, you would address them as "Your Excellency," and also genuflect on your left knee (why the left? because the right knee is the one with which you genuflect to the altar, of course!) and kiss their ring.

Finally, there is the way that you would address them verbally in informal circumstances. In the case of a Roman Catholic bishop, you would address them as "Bishop So-and-So."