Vatican Relying on India and Africa For New Priests

source: Daily Religious, March 2, 2009

[HPI note: These Vatican statistics are relevant to Hinduism because
they show the Catholic Church’s need for conversion and aggressive
proselytism in India.]

VATICAN CITY, March 2, 2009: The number of Catholic priests rose
slightly in 2007, but only because of dramatic growth rates in Africa
and Asia, according to new statistics released by the Vatican.



“The number of priests maintains the trend of moderate growth
inaugurated in 2000, after more than 20 years of rather disappointing
performance,” according to the newly released 2009 edition of the
Pontifical Yearbook, the church’s annually published organizational
directory. With 408,024 priests at the end of 2007, their ranks had
grown by 0.19 percent in one year, and 0.7 percent since 2000.

Growth was concentrated in Africa and Asia, where ordinations in
2007 rose by 27.6 percent and 21.2 percent respectively. Enrollment at
seminaries in those continents also rose.

By contrast, the number of priests in Europe and Oceania fell by 6.8
percent and 5.5 percent respectively. European seminaries shrank by 2.1
percent in the same period. In the Americas, the number of priests
remained “practically stationary,” but seminary enrollments fell by 1

The number of baptized Catholics as a share of world population remained unchanged at 17.3 percent, the Vatican said.

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