There must be something in the water in the Diocese of Little Rock.
Arkansas Catholic, the official newspaper of the Diocese of Little Rock, is reporting that the diocese currently has 27 men in formation and expects to add as many as 10 more next fall. This uptick in vocations has even prompted talk of reopening the diocesan seminary.
What makes this all the more remarkable is that the diocese, which encompasses the entire state of Arkansas, only has about 112,000 Catholics.
Little Rock currently has 24.1 seminarians per 100,000 Catholics and, if all 10 potential new seminarians follow through, will have 33.0 per 100,000 this fall.
These numbers compare quite favorably with those of the Archdiocese of St. Louis and the Diocese of Wichita (21.6 and 38.3 seminarians per 100,000 Catholics, respectively - see here).
By way of contrast, DOR currently has 1.7 seminarians for every 100,000 Catholics.