The vitality of the Church and, above all, the faith that animates her pastors and her faithful cannot be measured by numbers and statistics. Only God knows the mysterious and unique relationship that unites him to people who profess themselves Catholic. This is what constitutes the essence of the faith.
Yet the Church, like every visible human reality, cannot live outside the dimensions of space and time and should not refrain from measuring her own quantitative dimensions in some way, without expecting them to convey more than they can offer. For this reason, the Central Office of Statistics of the Church has edited the Pontifical Yearbook 2020 and the Annuarium Statisticum Ecclesiae 2018.
First, we report some statistics that help to form an idea of the changes that have occurred in the dimensions of the Church itself and its members. The comparisons were made between 2013 and 2018, that is, for the first five years of the pontificate of Pope Francis.