Most new priests pray rosary

Survey of new priests

A survey of new US priests showed most are raised Catholic in intact families, prayed the rosary and regularly attended Eucharistic adoration.

The survey was conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) at Georgetown University, and received 334 responses from the 458 seminarians to be ordained this year.

The study showed that 93% of the ordinands were baptised Catholic as infants. Biological parents raised 96%, and 92% were raised by a married couple living together.

Additionally, 84% of ordinands reported that both parents were Catholic, and one in three respondents had a relative who is a priest or religious.

“On this day, let us thank God for continuing to call men and women to serve him and his Church as priests, religious and consecrated persons,” Bishop Earl Boyea of Lansing, Michigan, said on the April 25 release of the survey.

“We pray that all families, teachers, and priests will continue their essential work of instilling the faith and love of Jesus in our children,” concluded Boyea, who chairs the US bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations.

Devotional life marked by regular prayer

The survey highlighted the everyday habits of church ministry and devotional life among the prospective priests.

For example, 72% of the respondents had been altar servers, while 73% took part in eucharistic adoration, 66% regularly prayed the rosary, and 45% were in prayer or Bible groups.

Moreover, the survey showed that 63% of the respondents said their parish priest had been an encouraging influence on their vocation.

Regarding education, the survey found that 43% of respondents had attended a Catholic elementary school, while as many as 34% attended a Catholic high school. Additionally, 35% of respondents attended a Catholic college.

26% of respondents reported educational debt upon entering seminary, with the median amount owed being $21,000.

The study also showed that diocesan ordinands had a median age of 30, while ordinands for religious institutes were slightly older, with a median age of 34.

The Midwest and the South now lead in seminarian formation, as seminaries in these two regions each formed 31% of the priests-to-be.


Catholic News Agency


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