Profile of typical new U.S. priest

33 years old, prayed the Rosary and took part in Eucharistic adoration before entering seminary

Fr. Colin Wen, left, and Fr. Ronald Torres stand in the Cathedral of Blessed Sacrament in Sacramento, after being ordained as priests. (Aaron Rosenblatt/Daily Republic)

The typical member of the priestly ordination class of 2019 is a 33-year-old cradle Catholic, according to a recently released survey of 379 of the 481 men slated to be ordained to the priesthood in the United States this year. The survey was conducted for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate.

The typical ordinand regularly took part in Eucharistic adoration and prayed the Rosary before entering seminary, according to the survey.

75% of the men were preparing for the diocesan priesthood. Among members of religious communities, the largest number of respondents came from the Jesuits (16), Dominicans (11), and Legionaries of Christ (10).

25% of the ordinands are foreign born, with the most typical foreign countries of birth being Mexico (5%), Nigeria (3%), Colombia (2%), and Vietnam (2%). On average, these foreign-born seminarians have lived in the United States for 14 years and arrived in the US at age 22.

A disproportionately high percentage of ordinands attended a Catholic elementary school (47%), Catholic high school (39%), or Catholic college (38%).

In addition, a disproportionately high percentage were home schooled: 11% were home schooled, typically for eight years, at a time when less than 2% of US children were educated at home. If one assumes that all of the homeschooled seminarians came from the United States, then nearly 15% of US-born ordinands were home schooled.

Full story at Catholic Culture.

Comments

  1. The important — but apparently missing– statistic is whether, overall, this number ‘covers’ the loss of priests due to death, retirement, and other causes.
    I’m also curious why no response from just over 20% of the new priests.

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