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Taking the present number of active priests under the age of 75 and basing a projection on the remote possibility that there are no deaths under that age, that no priest retires early, that nobody decides to leave active ministry and that there are no ordinations, there would be a decline in the number of active priests from 212 to 152 - a decline of 60.









However, such a prediction would not be well founded. Therefore the prediction being put forward is based on the following considerations:






  • At present, a little over 20% of those priests over the age of 75 are currently continuing in ministry. It is to be hoped that this trend will continue.



  • At present, an average of 2 priests per year retire below the age of 75. It is presumed that under-75 retirements will continue at this level.



  • Over the last 10 years, an average of 2 priests per year have died under the age of 75. These figures are based on this trend continuing.



  • Again, over the last 10 years, an average of 1 priest has left active ministry each year. This consideration is included in the figures also.



  • Looking to the future, and taking into consideration the present number of students in seminary formation (not including those following a propaedeutic year) the average number of ordinations will be 2 per year. This figure has been used in these figures.


Based on these considerations, it is possible to propose that, over a period of 10 years, the number of active priests would decline from 219 to 169 - a decline of 50.




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