Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

U.S. seminarians

June 14th, 2010, Promulgated by Mike

Over at Ten Reasons there was a recent discussion about U.S. seminarians.  Someone asked about the number of seminarians in 1978 and the number now.

I consulted my collection of Official Catholic Directories along with my copy of the Index of Leading Catholic Indicators (which uses OCD data) and came up with the following chart going back to 1945 …

Seminarians 1945-2009

Focusing in on the last 10 years for which data are available, the chart looks like this …

Seminarians 2000-2009

To answer the question, the number of seminarians in 1978 seems to have been about 9,600, while the number in 2009 was 3,274.



2 Responses to “U.S. seminarians”

  1. Nerina says:

    Mike, you are tireless in your pursuit of facts. Thank you for your efforts. By the way, I am finally reading the book “Good Bye, Good Men.” I’m curious to know if you have read it and what your thoughts were. To say I am seething is an understatement. Your post about seminarians got me to thinking about the book.

  2. Mike says:


    Good Bye, Good Men is part of what I euphemistically call my library. I actually haven’t read much of it but what I did read was sickening. I recall Michael Rose catching a lot of flak over a few of his claims but I don’t believe he ever backed down an inch. I did use some information from his book in my post on Fr. Frank Fusare.

    Right now I’m trying to get through Anne Roche Muggeridge’s The Desolate City: Revolution in the Catholic Church. It’s 20 years old and thus that much closer to all the upheaval following Vatican II. It is a well-documented 240 page look at how the liberal/progressives have infiltrated the Church and set about trying – with far too much success! – to install their agendas.

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