Religion: Catholic Growth

The number of Roman Catholics in the U.S. has increased 47.8% since 1949, according to the latest edition of The Official Catholic Directory, out this week. The current total of 39,505.475 represents a jump of 3,481,498 during 1958. The number of ordained priests is 52,689 (up 1,876), nuns and sisters 164.922 (up 347), brothers 9,709 (up 15). And for the 13th consecutive year, the church has reported more than 100,000 adult converts: 140,411 in 1958, a total of 1,301,335 in the past decade.


Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!