21 April 2024

Religious Orders in Recent Times (top dozen, charts, 2024)

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 sets 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). They are currently at 14,195 members, down 61% from the all time high.

One might note that there is no significant change in the trends (positive or negative) since Pope Francis (a Jesuit) became Pope. In fairness, it normally takes several years for any event in a religious order (or diocese) to have an impact on the vocation numbers. In the case of the Jesuits, they also have a much longer formation process than most, meaning it could take even longer.

Two more orders reached that milestone in 2016: Franciscans (now down 55%) and Oblates of Mary Immaculate (now down 54%).

Two more orders reached that point in 2022: Redemptorists (down 51%) and Vincentians/Lazarists (down 52%).

In terms of priests, only four orders have reached that point, the Benedictines which are down 54% from their recent high point (from 7,058 in the early 1970s to 3,420 in 2019) and the Oblates of Mary Immaculate which reached it in 2021 (from 5,441 in 1967 to 2,643) down 52% now). 

In 2022 the Jesuits were down 50% (from 21,025 in 1969 to 10,432), now down 51%. This year the Franciscans were added to the list, down 51% (from 16,528 in 1967 to 8,140.

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 2016: Divine Word Missionaries with 4,231 and Discalced Carmelites with 2,937.

The Discalced Carmelites had the best year of the top 12, increasing their number of priests by 4.

Overall, adding all of the top 12 together, the all time high was in 1966 with 160,926 total members. In 2023, that had dropped 46% to 87,101. In terms of priests, the high was in 1971 with 95,411 total priests. In 2023, that had dropped 37% to 60,322.

If current trends continue, the Jesuits will lose the title of the largest religious order to the Salesians of Saint John Bosco soon. The number of members should cross in about 2 years. In addition the Jesuits should fall under 10,000 priests about the same time.

(* 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 hope to do similar charts for Female Religious Orders. A few have already been added to the main website.

01 January 2024

Possible USA Catholic Hierarchy Changes for 2024

Already Vacant
(All are Dioceses/Eparchies)

09 October 2023

Cardinal Sako born when?

Louis Raphaël I Cardinal Sako, Patriarch of Baghdad (Chaldean), Iraq, revealed in an interview that his parents re-used the birth certificate of his older brother (who had died). His actual birth date is 1 year later than previously thought (thus 4 July 1949). 

The interview can be found here.

Here is the relevant section, in the original language and with a translation (provided by Google Translate):

KNA: Sie haben unlängst Ihren 75. Geburtstag gefeiert.

Sako: Das stimmt nicht. Ich wurde 1949 geboren. Aber ich hatte einen älteren Bruder selben Namens, der gestorben ist. Meine Eltern haben mir seine Geburtsurkunde gegeben. Ich werde also erst nächstes Jahr am 4. Juli 75 Jahre alt.

KNA: You recently celebrated your 75th birthday.

Sako: That's not true. I was born in 1949. But I had an older brother with the same name who died. My parents gave me his birth certificate. So I won't be 75 until July 4th next year.
The correct date is not reflected in any of the usual sources (yet).

06 October 2023

Google Form prompts user to Sign-in to Google - Fixed!

I recently modified a form that I've been using for years for basic feedback on a website I run. All of the sudden the new version had an ugly "Sign-in to Google" prompt at the very start. And to make things 100 times worse, the next line (in red) was "* indicates required question".

Needless to say that was confusing my users considerably!

If this happens, be sure to check all of these settings:

Under Responses:

  • Collect email address: Do not collect
  • Allow response editing: Off
  • Limit to 1 reponse: off

Under Presentation:

  • Disable autosave for all respondents: On

(It was the last one that had me stumped for a while!)

FYI, unsolicited plug: I've been using the extension "Email Notifications for Google Forms" by Digital Inspiration for a few years - just the Standard version - and it works exactly as advertised.

02 September 2023

Corel Paradox - Fresh Install Notes

When you do a fresh install of Corel Paradox (part of WordPerfect Office Professional 2021) it has an interesting, if not useful, feature that is also installed. Namely "PdxRegCl" - which stands for Paradox Registry Key Cleaner.

It does what you expect - clears all of the registry settings related to Paradox. In real life, I can't imagine a need for this outside of developers, and certainly not every single time the computer is restarted.

Simply deleting the utility or renaming it will not fix the issue, it will auto re-install when Paradox is opened.

The fix is to start Task Manager, go to Startup, and disable PdxRegCl. See the image below.

With a new install, you might also be interested in my post about the printing bug and its fix.

(Note: this was a fresh install on Windows 11 Pro (release 22h2))

Corel Paradox Printing Bug Fix

I just recently did a new install of Corel Paradox (no really!) and ran into an old bug that is not well documented on the web. 

After a fresh install, the version shows as (file pdxwin32.exe shows that version and a date of 10 Mar 2010). 

The bug is simple, try to print anything in the application and it immediately crashes. 

The good news is there is a fix, although it can be difficult to find. 

Here is the current location (https://www.wordperfect.com/en/support/updates/#wpo-x5) 

It is called "Paradox Hot Fix 1" (or "Paradox Runtime Hot Fix 1" if using the Runtime version). 

Note that after installing the patch, the version and date of Paradox does not change - so there is no easy way to tell if the patch is installed other than it no longer crashes on print.

FYI, Corel Paradox (developed by Borland) is available as part of WordPerfect Office Professional 2021 but sadly is not included in the Demo version. There have not been any changes to Paradox itself in many years - the hot fix is dated 2010!

However, I am happy to report it installs fine on Windows 11 Pro (release 22h2).