An article in the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano incorrectly reported a 10 % decline in the numbers of vowed religious. The correct figures, more than one tenth fewer, were reported on Tuesday, according to L’Osservatore Romano.
The paper initially reported a decline of 94,000 in the number of Catholics in religious orders between 2005 and 2006. The actual number was 7,230, according to Vatican spokesman Father Ciro Benedettini.
A total of 945,210 people belong to religious orders worldwide. About 753,000 are women serving as nuns, either as cloistered contemplatives, teachers, health workers, or missionaries. Male clerics, including 136,000 priests, constitute the remainder, according to L’Osservatore Romano.