06 February 2017

200 million pages served

In the last week of January, the main website passed a milestone - 200 million web pages served.

While the website has been around in some form since 1997. About five years that the website acquired its name and all stats begin at that point.

So, as of last weekend, folks have made 32.2 million visits to the website, seeing a bit over 200 million web pages (552 million hits for the nerds out there). That's a bit over 3 terabytes of data served.

Many thanks to all of you that use the website!

05 February 2017

Cardinal Stats and Charts, 2017

This posts assumes that there are no deaths among the current Cardinals.

As of today (5 Feb 2017, there are be 226 Living Cardinals with 119 eligible to vote in a conclave when that should become necessary.

The average age of the Cardinals is 78.16 and the average of the electors is 71.18 years old.

The average length of service as a Cardinal is 11.27 years, 6.39 years if only considering electors.

The youngest Cardinal is Dieudonné Nzapalainga, C.S.Sp. (Archbishop of Bangui) who will turn 50 years old on 14 March.

The oldest Cardinal is José de Jesús Pimiento Rodriguez (Archbishop Emeritus of Manizales) who will turn 98 on the 18th of this month.

I've posted an updated version of the Cardinal Charts (warning: PDF format).

The charts are:
  • Number of Cardinals (1585-2027; 1915-2027; and 1965-2027)
  • Average Age (1585-2027; 1915-2027; and 1965-2027)

Cardinals Turning 80

WhenCardinal Electors
Now119
End of 2017116
End of 2018109
End of 201999
(the table assumes no deaths nor new Cardinal Electors)

For a prediction of when the next batch of Cardinals will be created, please see this post.


Cardinal-Electors as Percent of the College

With the introduction of the age limit for Cardinals to vote in a conclave, the percent of Cardinals eligible to vote has been trending downward.

Today, 52.2% are Electors.

Assuming no Cardinal deaths and no new creations, on 7 Mar 2018, Cardinal-Electors will be 50% (113 of 226). On 30 Mar 2018 it will fall below 50% for the first time ever (112 of 226).

Given that deaths of non-Electors are more likely, the dates will likely be later than those given above.

16 January 2017

Predicting New Cardinals: 2018 and 2019

As of today, there are 226 living Cardinals. Of those, 120 have the right to vote in a Conclave when one becomes necessary (aka, they have not yet turned 80 years old). These are called the Cardinal Electors.

The limit of the number of Cardinal Electors is 120, although the Pope can ignore that if he so desires.

This year (2017) only four Cardinal Electors turn 80. That makes a consistory to create new cardinals this year unlikely.

Next year (2018) is a different story - seven additional Cardinals turn 80. In an odd streak of luck, all of them fall in the first half of the year.

Assuming no deaths, that means that 11 Cardinal Elector "slots" will be available by June, 2018. So I'm predicting a Consistory to Create New Cardinals in late Spring or early Summer 2018.

With the effort of Pope Francis to de-emphasize the Roman aspect of the pallium distribution, perhaps the weekend after the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul would be a good time.

In 2019, an additional 11 Cardinal Electors turn 80. Four of those fall in October. Thus I'm predicting another Consistory to Create New Cardinals in late Fall 2019.

The weekend of Christ the King (23-24 Nov) would be an obvious choice but there are other options such as All Saints/All Souls or the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica.

(Note I had previously predicted a consistory in the "Spring of 2018" in this post back in November 2015.)

Of course, I have no inside knowledge and the creation of cardinals is at the complete discretion of the Holy Father.

Related:

16 April 2016

Decoding the "Source(s) Section" on Bishop pages

Several years ago, I introduced the "Source(s)" section on Bishop pages on the site. It is still far from complete and not all entries are visible.

Most of the actual source references are pretty easy to understand. Sometimes it is only initials (perhaps with a date) - those usually refer to individuals that often provide information for the site. In the future, I may expand those to full names, after I have consulted with them.

But the first part of the source information line may be a bit more confusing. So here is a list of the common codes (when multiple apply, they may be separated by a slash).


  • bp birth place
  • bd birth date
  • b biography (general, usually means too many items to list separately)
  • od ordained deacon
  • op ordained priest
  • ob ordained bishop
  • oXd diocese for whom he was ordained (examples: odd, opd, obd)
  • oXp location at which he was ordained (not currently in the databases)
  • dd death date
  • dp death place
  • i installed
  • s succeeded
  • ab appointed bishop
  • r resigned/retired
  • c0 bishop who ordained him to the diaconate
  • c1 bishop who ordained him to the priesthood
  • c2 principal consecrator for his bishop ordination
  • cX principal co-consecrator for his bishop ordination (X being any number above 2)

(note the c are often combined, so c2+ means principal consecrators plus co-consecrators)

An example that has several of these is the entry for my own ordinary:  Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City in Kansas.

09 April 2016

Milestones: 30 million visits

My little project had its 30 millionth visit last month!

In just under 14 years of with this web address, it has had: 30,253,558 visits with 188,142,966 pages served.

That's about 120k unique monthly visitors making 240k monthly visits and viewing about 1.4 million pages each month (averages for 2015).

Sadly I do not have good stats from the early days of the project (before May 2002). Also the stats are a bit understated because of a few failures with the logs - mostly at times of extreme high volume (the two papal transition periods).

Many thanks to all of you that use the website!

19 March 2016

Religious Orders in Recent Times (top dozen, charts, 2016)

I've updated a few charts that look at the number of priests and members of religious orders over the last several decades. To avoid it looking like spaghetti, I only used the top dozen orders based on number of priests*. I also split the top 4 from the other 8 - there is very little overlap between the two and it makes the charts much clearer.

The charts are posted here. (.pdf format)

The Jesuits were the first order (of the top dozen) to have lost more than half of their members from their recent high point (from 36,038 in 1966 to 17,908 in 2011). The are currently at 16,740 members, down 54% from the all time high.

One might note that there is no significant change since Pope Francis (a Jesuit) became Pope. In fairness, it normally takes several years for any event in a religious order (or diocese) to show in the vocation numbers.

Four more orders are very close to reaching that point: Franciscans (down a hair under 50%), Oblates of Mary Immaculate (down 49%), Redemptorists (down 46%), and Vincentians/Lazarists (down 46%). All four showed small drops in the last year.

In terms of priests, no order has reached that point yet and the only one really close is Benedictines which are down 48% from their recent high point (from 7,058 in the early 1970s to 3,677 in 2015).

In the top dozen, only one order, Divine Word Missionaries, has hit its high mark in terms of members in recent years (6,131 in 2009).

In terms of priests, two orders hit their highest mark in 2015: Divine Word Missionaries with 4,224 and Discalced Carmelites with 2,900.

(* Out of curiosity I checked the top dozen orders based on number of members - it was the same dozen, but in a slightly different order.)

Note that only Male Religious Orders were included because that happens to be the data I have readily available. As time permits, I'll try to do similar charts for Female Religious Orders.

08 December 2015

Age at Consecration: Comparing Three Popes Appointments

This is a look at the age at consecration of bishops named by the current and previous two Popes. To help simplify things, I've excluded those consecrated in the first 3 months of a Pope's reign (since they were likely named by the previous Pope).

Overall John Paul II Benedict XVI Francis
Count 5,675 3,912 1,282 481
Youngest 29.7 29.7 37.0 37.9
Average 53.1 52.8 53.9 54.3
Median 52.5 52.1 52.9 53.7
Oldest 91.8 82.0 91.8 73.0

The median is probably the best gauge to use since it reduces the impact of outliers. We can see a minor upward trend in the consecration ages under the 3 Popes.

It will be interesting to see if this trend continues during the remainder of the reign of Pope Francis.