Rectors vicars curates

What’s the difference between a rector, a vicar and a curate?

In the early days of the Church of England, parish priests consisted of rectors, vicars, and perpetual curates. A rector received direct payment of all tithes paid to the church. Tithes were a 10 per cent annual tax on a person’s assets. A vicar only received the lesser tithes. A perpetual curate held the ‘cure of souls’ in a parish that had not yet been legally adopted as such. He received a small stipend. The distinction between rector and vicar no longer applies, but the terms continue to be used, depending on historical usage.


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