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The Annuario Pontificio (Italian for Pontifical Yearbook) is the annual directory of the Holy See. It lists all the popes to date and all officials of the Holy See's departments. It also gives complete lists, with contact information, of the cardinals and Catholic bishops throughout the world, the dioceses (with statistics about each), the departments of the Roman Curia, the Holy See's diplomatic missions abroad, the embassies accredited to the Holy See, the headquarters of religious institutes (again with statistics on each), certain academic institutions, and other similar information. The index includes, along with all the names in the body of the book, those of all priests who have been granted the title of "Monsignor". As the title suggests, the red-covered yearbook, compiled by the Central Statistics Office of the Church and published by Libreria Editrice Vaticana, is mostly in Italian. The 2006 edition has 2,484 pages and costs US$90.60.
A yearbook of the Catholic Church was published, with some interruptions, from 1716 to 1859 by the Cracas printing firm in Rome, under the title (in Italian) Information for the Year ... From 1851, a department of the Holy See began producing a different publication called (in Italian) Hierarchy of the Holy Catholic Apostolic Church Worldwide and in Every Rite, with historical notes, which took the title Annuario Pontificio in 1860, but ceased publication in 1870. This was the first yearbook published by the Holy See itself, but its compilation was entrusted to the newspaper Giornale di Roma. The publishers "Fratelli Monaldi" (Monaldi Brothers) began in 1872 to produce their own yearbook entitled (in Italian) The Catholic Hierarchy and the Papal Household for the Year ... with an appendix of other information concerning the Holy See.
The Vatican Press took this over in 1885, thus making it a semi-official publication. It bore the indication "official publication" from 1899 to 1904, but this ceased when, giving the word "official" a more restricted sense, the Acta Sanctae Sedis, forerunner of the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, was declared the only "official" publication of the Holy See. In 1912, it resumed the title Annuario Pontificio. From 1912 to 1924, it included not only lists of names, but also brief illustrative notes on departments of the Roman Curia and on certain posts within the papal court, a practice to which it returned in 1940.
For some years, beginning in 1898, the Maison de la Bonne Presse publishing house of Paris produced a similar yearbook in French called Annuaire Pontifical Catholique, not compiled by the Holy See. This contained much additional information, such as detailed historical articles on the Swiss Guards and the Papal Palace at the Vatican.
According to the Pontifical Yearbook of 2010, the number of Catholics in the world increased from 1,147,000,000 to 1,166,000,000 between 2007 and 2008, a growth of 1.7 percent. By the Yearbook of 2014 it was 1,228,621,000 at the end of 2012.
According to the Annuario Pontificio 2012 the statistical data given in the yearbook regarding archdioceses and dioceses are furnished by the diocesan curias concerned and reflect the diocesan situation on the 31st of December of the year prior to the date on the yearbook, unless there is another indication. The data recorded are shown in the following order next to these abbreviations:
- Su - area in square kilometers of the diocesan territory
- pp - population of the diocese
- ct - number of Catholics
- pr - parishes and quasi-parishes
- ch - churches or mission stations
- sd - secular priests resident in the diocese
- dn - diocesan priests ordained during the year
- sr - religious priests resident in the diocese
- rn - religious priests ordained during the year
- dp - permanent deacons
- sm - seminarians taking courses of philosophy and theology
- rm - members of men's religious institutes
- rf - members of women's religious institutes
- ie - educational institutes
- ib - charitable institutes
- ba - baptisms
- "Annuario Pontificio 2006". Paxbook.com. Retrieved April 11, 2010.
- "Number of Catholics Increases Worldwide: 2010 "Annuario" Shows Growth in Asia and Africa". Zenit. February 21, 2010. Retrieved April 11, 2010.
- Secretary of State, Annuario Pontificio 2010. Vatican City: Vatican Publishing House. ISBN 978-88-209-8355-0
- Secretary of State, Annuario Pontificio 2009. Vatican City: Vatican Publishing House. ISBN 978-88-209-8191-4
- Secretary of State, Annuario Pontificio 2008. Vatican City: Vatican Publishing House. ISBN 978-88-209-8021-4
- Secretary of State, Annuario Pontificio 2007. Vatican City: Vatican Publishing House. ISBN 978-88-209-7908-9
- Secretary of State, Annuario Pontificio 2006. Vatican City: Vatican Publishing House. ISBN 978-88-209-7806-8
- Secretary of State, Annuario Pontificio 2005. Vatican City: Vatican Publishing House. ISBN 978-88-209-7678-1