Michael Batu, Marcelo Arbex, Richard Corneil, Robert WeaverA partnership between the UWindsor economics department and Assumption University will consider factors that prompt men to become Roman Catholic priests. From left: economics professors Michael Batu and Marcelo Arbex; Richard Corneil, principal of Assumption University; Robert Weaver of the Diocese of London.

Survey to probe factors in decision to join priesthood

What factors prompt men to enter the priesthood? A research project based at the University of Windsor hopes to find out.

Economics professor Marcelo Arbex is the lead investigator on the study, entitled “Determinants of Catholic men entering the priesthood: A Canadian-based analysis.”

His team will conduct an electronic survey of Roman Catholic priests asking about determinants that guided their choice to enter clerical life.

“This research project will yield a detailed combination of quantitative and qualitative data and will incorporate a variety of relevant factors, including the respondents’ demographic information, family faith life, and their educational experiences during high school and university,” Dr. Arbex says. “We will also assess the impact of the church’s efforts to promote clerical vocations.”

The study is sponsored by partners in the Assumption University Vocations Research Project.

Besides Arbex, team members include Rev. Robert Weaver, a priest and former faculty member in the UWindsor School of Social Work; economics professor Michael Batu; a Master’s candidate and two undergraduate students of economics.

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