Seminary, Deacon Formation Enrollments Drop; Lay Ministry up

Catholic News Service
May 2, 2003

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- For the first time in five years, the number of students in U.S. Catholic seminary theologates dropped in 2002-03, according to data released by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate. The number of high school and college seminarians also declined, as did the number participating in permanent diaconate formation programs. The nation's Catholic lay ecclesial ministry formation programs, however, registered an enrollment increase of more than 1,000, from 34,414 in the 2001-02 school year to 35,448 in the current year. CARA reported that most graduates of lay ministry programs use their formation for volunteer ministry, but substantial numbers are hired full time or part time in catechetics, pastoral administration or other church ministries. CARA, a Catholic research agency based at Georgetown University, published the new data in its "CARA Catholic Ministry Formation Directory 2003." The 410-page directory provides detailed information on all Catholic priestly, diaconal and lay ministry formation programs in the country as well as an overview and analysis of national data and trends.


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.