How Many Priests Are in the U.S.?

Bishops’ Conference Publishes 2003 Source Book

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WASHINGTON, D.C., JAN. 26, 2003 ( How many Catholics are in the United States? And how many permanent deacons?

The answers to those and other questions are in the 2003 Source Book, published by the U.S. bishops’ conference.

The Source Book includes a listing of bishops’ conference staffers who can provide expertise to media covering the Church. It also includes an explanation of the conference’s structure and data on Church personnel and activities.

The 2003 Source Book notes, for example, that in the United States, there are:

— 65,270,444 Catholics (23% of the U.S. population);

— 45,713 priests;

— 4,719 seminarians;

— 13,764 permanent deacons;

— 75,500 religious sisters and 5,690 religious brothers.

The 2003 Source Book also notes that in the last year of most recent statistics, there were:

— 1,007,716 infant baptisms;

— 79,892 adult baptisms

— 81,240 persons received into full communion through conversion from a Christian denomination;

— 3,391,581 students educated in Catholic schools and colleges;

— 82,395,935 patients treated in Catholic hospitals;

— 5,811,381 patients treated in other Catholic health care institutions;

— 7,017,845 individuals in need of help who were assisted by Catholic Charities.

Information from the 2003 Source Book can also be located on the Web at

Anyone wishing a copy of the source book can request one by e-mailing

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