.- As the United Kingdom prepares for Pope Benedict XVI's September 16-19 visit, the Vatican has released the current statistics on the Catholic Church in Great Britain.
The Holy Father will beatify theologian Cardinal John Henry Newman and will meet with Queen Elizabeth II during his trip.
Taken from the Central Statistical Office of the Church, the Vatican notes that Great Britain has a total population of 59,381,000 people, with 5,264,000 (8.87%) of them describing themselves as Catholic.
Serving the faithful in 32 different dioceses and 2,977 parishes in Britain are 59 bishops, 5,225 priests, 6,497 religious and 34,669 catechists. Additionally, the country has two minor seminarians and 245 major seminarians.
A total of 806,334 students attend 2,828 Catholic schools ranging from kindergarten to college. Great Britain also has several other Church-run institutions including: eight hospitals, 171 homes for the elderly or disabled, 79 orphanages, 94 family counseling and pro-life centers, and 147 centers for education and social rehabilitation.