Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

World's Catholic population continues to grow

Catholic World News - May 05, 2014

The world’s Catholic population grew in 2013 by slightly more than the overall population, the latest Statistical Yearbook of the Church reports.

The number of Catholic priests also rose in 2012 (the last year for which final statistics are available), as did the number of deacons. However the number of women religious continued a long decline, and the number of seminarians, which had risen in recent years, fell off slightly.

The Yearbook records a population of 1.228 billion Catholics at the close of 2012. That count is probably low by several million, the book notes, because Church officials were unable to supply an accurate count of Catholics in nations where the Church suffers political repression, such as China and North Korea.

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($27,707 to go):
$150,000.00 $122,292.96
18% 82%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Savonarola - May. 05, 2014 7:58 PM ET USA

    The US portion of this is just not credible. Our dropout rate is shocking but the USCCB pretends we're OK on the numbers because so many of the immigrants, legal and illegal, are nominally "Catholics."

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Another side of Francis: US-Cuba role shows Pope's diplomatic muscle 1 hours ago
Silly season: a Christmas approaches, a scholar questions whether Jesus ever existed 2 hours ago
The intrinsic immorality of torture: still not convinced? 7 hours ago
The Complexity of Reforming Religious Communities December 17
Speaking Softly to Women Religious December 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Europe seems 'elderly and haggard' CWN - November 25
Pope Francis, Ecumenical Patriarch sign joint declaration, lament persecution of Christians CWN - December 1
Consistory for new cardinals scheduled for February CWN - December 11
Vatican report on US women religious calls for further self-assessment CWN - December 16
Pope brokered deal to open US-Cuba ties CWN - December 17