Catholic Church Statistics – Up, Down and Steady

The Vatican Publishing House recently published the official Statistical Yearbook of the Church for 2000-2006. The book reports on demographic changes throughout the world. 

In the Americas over these seven years, the Catholic population grew by 8.4%, the number of priests remained about the same representing around 30% of the priests worldwide, and the number of non-ordained religious also remained about the same.

Worldwide, the number of diocesan priests went up by about 2%, with significant increases in Asia and Africa and a decrease in Europe.  The number of non-ordained religious decreased sharply in Europe by 12% and increased sharply in Asia by 21% and in Africa by 8%.  The number of seminarians worldwide increased by 4% with most of the growth in Africa and Asia, while Europe accounted for a decrease of 16%.

 

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