Sunday, August 22, 2010

More World Wide Signs That Catholic Priesthood Vocation Crisis is Abating- Australia

This time in Australia. See AFTER years of decline, the number of priests in the Catholic Church in NSW is on the rise.

We see here :
There are around 577,000 Catholics in the Archdiocese, with a total population of 2,085,000. The Catholic population is 27.7% of the total. There are 139 parishes, in the pastoral care of around 246 diocesan priests. There are some 480 priests in total, including religious priests, working within the Archdiocese, including those on lesser duties and retired priests. There are 1,238 religious sisters and 275 religious brothers and 5 permanent deacons.

Well no doubt having a Orthodox Cardinal at the helm is a important factor in this increase. However what is interesting here is what the story was just a couple of years at World Youth Day.

A constant sub theme in the media coverage was the Australian sex abuse scandal and no one entering the Priesthood. Also people leaving the Church/The sex abuse scandal like in the USA was traumatic. However we again see signs that when the Church undergoes a period of purification it comes out stronger.

If you see these numbers of Priesthood vocations then no doubt things are stirring elsewhere.

Now if we can get Europe back to speed we shall be in good shape.

Update- This Aussie Catholic blogger has a post on the whole Australia situation. I am actually going to comment on something else he mentions later.

CathNews has it all!

It is a nice article, but well it can be misleading. Now you can gauge how many priests you will have roughly by the number of seminarians you have. Please note the article only refers to diocesan seminarians.

What affects numbers are:

Importing seminarians
Seminarians returning who had previously left
Religious and diocesans seminarians transferring diocese

So it isn't perfect, but with regards to local priests it is fairly easy to determine.

Now the article doesn't take into account the seminarians who are studying in Rome or any other place in the world.

Ok now for their numbers.

They tell us Melbourne Seminary has 50 seminarians for Victoria and Tasmania (they have a guy?) Fairly straight forwardly ambiguous.

But wait for it! Brisbane was built for 16, it will be enlarged to 32. Um ok ... that's how many seminarians? Oh 21, thanks for that. Oh well at least I know how many rooms you will have if I ever wish to stay. Also dear people please NEVER refer to a seminary as being "at capacity", it is far too relative and frankly doesn't really mean anything. A seminary of one room is at capacity.

Now they do the trip, Wagga Wagga has 20 (amongst various dioceses) and Perth has 40 among two seminaries (also include various dioceses).

Sydney however has a whopping 63! (Amongst various dioceses and across two seminaries). Which is a bit deceptive since I am sure the bishops of the country dioceses are going to be a bit miffed that their seminarians are being used to massage the figures for the Metropolitan Archdioceses.

So sounds good

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