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World’s Catholic population continues to rise amid decline in number of seminarians, sisters

March 30, 2021

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CWN Editor's Note: According to Vatican statistics, the number of Catholics worldwide exceeded 1.34 billion at the end of 2019, holding steady at 17.7% of the world’s population. Between 2018 and 2019, the number of priests rose slightly (from 414,065 to 414,336), while the number of women religious fell from 641,661 to 630,099. The number of seminarians worldwide also declined, from 115,880 to 114,058. (The number of major seminarians worldwide rose from 63,882 in 1978 to 110,553 in 2000, and peaked at 120,616 in 2011.)

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