There are 419 men scheduled to be ordained as priests this year in the United States, and a survey of them reveals some interesting trends.
The average age of the men completing their journeys to Ordination is 33, and that has been trending younger since 1999, when the average age was 36.
Three in five of those about to be ordained are Caucasian, one in five is Hispanic, and about 4 percent are African or African American. About a quarter of them are foreign-born, with the most-common countries being Mexico, Vietnam, Brazil, Colombia, and India.
About 40 percent went to Catholic school, and one in ten reports being homeschooled. Nearly 60 percent completed a college degree before entering the seminary, with typical areas of study being philosophy, liberal arts, theology, business, science, math, or education.
The survey is taken every year by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
Most of those surveyed are studying in the United States, but about 8 percent are completing their studies at a seminary abroad.
Seven in ten of the men scheduled to be ordained this year worked full-time before entering the seminary. About 75 percent will become diocesan priests, and the rest are set to be religious order priests.
Ten percent of those to become new priests this year were not Catholic from birth, but rather, converted to the Church later in life.
Seven in ten reported regularly participating in Eucharistic Adoration before entering the seminary, and a similar proportion said the Rosary on a regular basis before starting their priestly studies.
Three-quarters of the men who are about to be ordained were altar servers in their home parishes before entering the seminary, and half served as lectors.
Among the men scheduled to ordained to the Priesthood this year is Rev. Mr. Matthew J. Kuna, who is a transitional deacon serving at the Cathedral of St. Catharine of Siena. He will be ordained by Bishop Alfred Schlert at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, June 4.
To read the entire survey report, click here.