Consecrated people have a very clear challenge today: taking care of the growing number of elderly members in their orders.
Year Consecrated women
According to the Vatican's Central Office for Church Statistics, in the last 11 years there are 90,000 fewer consecrated women in the world. Death is the main cause for this decline. In comparison, the number of consecrated men remains the same.
Year Consecrated man
Between 2008 and 2013, roughly 13,000 consecrated people left their congregation: three people for every thousand.
The masculine religious order with the most members is the Society of Jesus, followed by the Salesians of St. Bosco and the Order of Friars Minor.
Salesian Society 15,573
Pope Francis has dedicated this year to consecrated life, so that Christians may rediscover its value. He said it is time for renewal and to show the world the power of fraternity.
November 7, 2014
"The consecrated life can help the Church and the entire society by giving testimony of fraternity, saying that it is possible to live together as brothers in diversity.”
On February 2 he will preside over the Mass for the World Day of Consecrated Life before thousands of consecrated people at the Vatican.