Wednesday, May 07, 2008

The new priests of 2008

~from USCCB website
Many men in their thirties and many foreign-born are among the U.S. priests slated for ordination in 2008. This continues the trend of recent years. The average age is 36 for newly ordained diocesan priests and 39 for newly ordained men in religious orders, such as the Jesuits and Dominicans. About 30 percent of new priests are between 25 and 29 years of age. About 39 percent are in their thirties.

One-third of this year’s new priests were born outside the United States, with the largest numbers coming from Mexico, Vietnam, Poland, and the Philippines. The percentage of foreign-born is nearly the same in 2008 as in 2007 (32 percent compared to 31 percent), but has increased from the 22 percent reported in 1999. On average, ordinands born in another country have lived in the United States for 13 years.

The data were gathered for “The Class of 2008: Survey of Ordinands to the Priesthood” by the Georgetown University-based Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA). The annual survey was prepared for the U.S. bishops’ Secretariat of Clergy, Consecrated Life & Vocations. The entire report can be found at

“We are blessed with the enthusiasm the newly ordained will bring to the mission of the Church,” said Cardinal Sean O’Malley, chairman of the bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations. “We pray that through their good work and example more men will generously respond to the Lord’s call to serve as priests.”

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