Rector (ecclesiastical)

A rector is, in an ecclesiastical sense, a cleric who functions as an administrative leader in some Christian denominations.[1][2] In contrast, a vicar is also a cleric but functions as an assistant and representative of an administrative leader.[3][4]

Ancient usage

In ancient times bishops, as rulers of cities and provinces, especially in the Papal States, were called rectors, as were administrators of the patrimony of the Church (e.g. rector Siciliae).[5] The Latin term rector was used by Pope Gregory I in Regula Pastoralis as equivalent to the Latin term pastor (shepherd).[5]