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By the numbers: latest Church statistics show more priests, deacons

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 10/19/15

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Some highlights, from Fides:

As every year, in view of World Mission Day, this year celebrated on Sunday, October 18, Fides News Service offers some statistics chosen to give a panorama of the missionary Church all over the world. The tables are taken from the latest edition of the “Church’s Book of Statistics” published (updated to 31 December 2013) regarding members of the Church, church structures, healthcare, welfare and education. Please note that variations, increase or decrease, emerging from our own comparison with last year’s figures, are marked increase + or decrease – in brackets World population To 31 December 2013 the world population was 7.093.798.000 with an increase of 70.421.000 units compared with the previous year. Population growth was registered on every continent above all in Asia (+ 27.776.000) and Africa (+ 23.808.000) followed by America (+ 17.865.000); Europe (+ 289.000) and Oceania (+ 683.000). Catholics On the same date Catholics in the world numbered 1.253.926,000 units with an overall increase of 25.305.000 more than the previous year. The increase affects all continents especially America (+ 15.051.000) and Africa (+7.637.000) followed by Asia (+ 2.161.000); Europe (+ 285.000) and Oceania (+ 171.000). The world percentage of Catholics increased by 0.09 %, settling at 17.68%. By continent: increases were registered in Africa (+ 0.29), America (+ 0.38), Asia (+ 0.03), Europe (+ 0.03). A slight decrease was shown in Oceania (- 0.01). Persons and Catholics per priest This year the number of persons per priest in the world increased by 180 units, average 13.752. The distribution by continent: increase in America (+ 132); Europe (+ 49) and Oceania (+ 147); decrease in Africa (- 506); Asia (- 360). The number of Catholics per priest in the world increased by 54 units, average 3.019. There are increases in America (+ 115); Europe (+ 21) and Oceania (+ 38); decrease in Asia (-17) and Africa (-17). Bishops The total number of Bishops in the world increased by 40 units, to 5.173. Contrary to previous years where Diocesan Bishops increased in numbers, while Religious Bishops decreased, this year they both increased. Diocesan Bishops number 3.945 (28 more than in the previous year), whilw Religious Bishops number 1.228 (12 more). The increase in diocesan Bishops is registered in all continents except Oceania (-5): in America (+ 16); Asia (+ 8), Africa (+3) and Europe (+ 6). The number of religious Bishops increased on every continent: Africa (+2), America (+1), Asia (+6), Europe (+3), while Oceania unvaried. Priests  The total number of priests in the world increased by 1.035 units, to 415.348. The only continents which registered a decrease was again Europe (- 2.283) and a slight decrease in Oceania (- 3), whereas figures grew in Africa (+ 1.693), America (+ 188) and Asia (+1.440). Diocesan priests increased by 917 units, reaching a total of 280.532 with increases in Africa (+ 1.186); America (+ 539) and Asia (+ 900) and Oceania (+19). A drop in Europe (- 1.673) The number of Religious priests increased by 64 units to a total 134,816. Increases were registered as in recent years in Africa (+ 507) and Asia (+ 540), whereas numbers dropped in America (- 351), Europe (- 610) and Oceania (- 22). Permanent Deacons Permanent deacons in the world increased by 1,091 units to 43.195. The highest increase was registered again in America (+ 684) and in Europe (+ 373) and an increase in Africa (+ 8), Asia (+8) and Oceania (+18). Permanent Diocesan deacons in the world are 42.650, with an overall increase of 1.084 units. They increased on every continent: Africa (+5), America (+ 660), Asia (+23), Europe (+ 381) and Oceania (+ 15). Religious permanent deacons number 545, increased by 7 units compared to the previous year, with increases on every continent: Africa (+3), America (+ 24) and Oceania (+3) and a decrease in Asia (-15) and Europe (- 8).

There’s more. Read it all. 

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