Current research from the National Pastoral Life Center helps to more fully understand the reality of Lay Ecclesial Ministry. The reports below give a comprehensive look of the “changing leadership profile in U.S. Catholic parishes.”
- 2005, Lay Parish Ministers: A Study of Emerging Leadership provides the results of a fifteen-yearlong national study of lay parish ministers—who they are, where they are, how and why they have entered parish ministry, what they do, the experience they bring, compensation and benefits, and job satisfaction. This study provides important information for anyone seeking to understand lay parish ministry in the Catholic Church today. Click here to read the Executive Summary
- 1997, Parishes and Parish Ministers
- 1990, New Parish Ministers
Please click here for purchase information for any of the above reports.
The CARA Report is a quarterly publication featuring current research on Catholics and the Catholic Church in the United States. The CARA Report received awards for general excellence from the Catholic Press Association in 2003 and 2005. This 12-page, user-friendly resource contains frequent references to CARA research and that of others that is of interest and value to lay ecclesial ministers. To order a subscription or to request reprints of back issues, visit CARA’s website.
Catholic Ministry Formation Directory (2005) is “a definitive listing of all Catholic ministry formation programs. A unique and vital source of program and enrollment information for Catholic seminaries, diaconate formation programs, and lay ecclesial ministry formation programs, the Catholic Ministry Formation Directory has been thoroughly revised and updated, with up-to-date listings for over 650 programs, and expanded statistical analysis of trends in ministry formation enrollment.”To order copies, visit CARA’s website.
Catholic Ministry Formation Enrollments: Statistical Overview for 2005-2006 is an update of enrollment statistics for all programs listed in the Catholic Ministry Formation Directory. CARA collects enrollment data on every Catholic ministry formation program that prepares men and women for ministry in the Church as priests, deacons, and lay ecclesial ministers. This statistical overview is published annually and is available free with purchase of the Catholic Ministry Formation Directory. To download a copy, visit CARA’s website.
Understanding the Ministry: Parish Life Coordinators in the United States (2005) – Research conducted for the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership Project. This research examines those who are appointed to serve in parishes under Canon 517, §2. This canon was new to the Roman Catholic Church’s 1983 Code of Canon Law: “If the diocesan bishop should decide that due to a dearth of priests a participation in the exercise of the pastoral care of a parish is to be entrusted to a deacon or to some other person who is not a priest or to a community of persons, he is to appoint some priest endowed with the powers and faculties of a pastor to supervise the pastoral care.” This research can be found on the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership website.
Understanding the Experience: A Profile of Lay Ecclesial Ministers Serving as Parish Life Coordinators (2004) presents results from the 2002 Lay Ecclesial Minister Poll conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) at Georgetown University. This national random sample telephone poll included interviews with 795 lay ecclesial ministers in Catholic parishes in the United States as well as an over-sample of lay ecclesial ministers serving as parish life coordinators. Characteristics of parish life coordinators are described and compared, where possible, to those of lay ecclesial ministers in general and to the adult Catholic population. The report is available on the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership website.
Spiritual Formation for Lay Ecclesial Ministers (2001) is a study of the spiritual characteristics seen as desirable for lay ecclesial ministers and the ways in which those characteristics are developed by ministry formation programs, done for the Subcommittee by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, Georgetown University. This study can be found on the USCCB website.
Catholicism USA: A Portrait of the Catholic Church in the United State (2000) – combines narrative and description with statistics, trends, and analysis to provide an in-depth portrait of U.S. Catholics and their Church today. Complete with graphs, maps, and tables summarizing a wealth of data. To order copies, visit CARA’s website.
Financial Assistance for Lay Persons Preparing for Lay Ecclesial Ministry (2002)
A study of the financial assistance provided by dioceses and graduate schools to lay persons preparing for lay ecclesial ministry, done for the Subcommittee by the Life Cycle Institute of The Catholic University of America