Our Mission A Pressing Need How to Help

The Church Worldwide

(Changes from 2000 to 2012)

REGION2000 2012DIFFERENCE

Africa
Catholic population 130,018,000 198,587,000 +53%
Priests, diocesan and religious 27,165 40,133 +48%
Americas
Catholic population 519,391,000 598,819,000 +15%
Priests, diocesan and religious 120,841 122,924 +2%
Asia
Catholic population 107,302,000 134,641,000 +25%
Priests, diocesan and religious 43,566 60,042 +38%
Europe
Catholic population 280,144,000 286,868,000 +2%
Priests, diocesan and religious 208,659 186,489 -11%
Oceania
Catholic population 8,202,000 9,706,000 +18%
Priests, diocesan and religious 4,947 4,725 -4%
Worldwide
Catholic population 1,045,057,000 1,228,621,000 +18%
Priests, diocesan and religious 405,178 414,313 +2%
    

Source: Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate


Workforce for the Apostolate

As of December 31, 2017

CategoryWorldwideUSAUS % of Total

Bishops 5,487 508 9%
Priests, diocesan and religious 419,728 37,181 9%
Permanent Deacons 45,609 18,287 40%
Religious Brothers 52,625 4,007 8%
Religious sisters 659,445 45,605 7%
Total Catholics 1,299,000,000 74,300,0006%

Sources: Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate and catholic-hierarchy.org


U.S. Data on Catholics


  1965 1975 1985 1995 2005 2015

Diocesan priests 35,925 36,005 35,052 32,349 28,702 25,868
Religious priests 22,707 22,904 22,265 16,705 14,137 11,710
Total priests 58,632 58,909 57,317 49,054 42,839 37,578
Priestly ordinations 994 771 533 511 454 515
Graduate-level seminarians 8,325 5,279 4,063 3,172 3,308 3,650
Permanent deacons -- 898 7,204 10,932 14,574 18,082
Religious brothers 12,271 8,625 7,544 6,535 5,451 4,200
Religious sisters 179,954 135,225 115,386 90,809 68,634 48,546
Parishes 17,637 18,515 19,244 19,331 18,891 17,337
Parishes without a resident priest pastor 549 702 1,051 2,161 3,251 3,533
Catholic population 45.6m 48.7m 52.3m 57.4m 64.8m 68.1m
Percent of U.S. population that is Catholic 24% 23% 23% 23% 23% 21%

Sources: The Official Catholic Directory, CARA Catholic Ministry Formation Directory*


*as summarized on the USCCB website