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New Priests 2023

The April 24th issue of Jinja Shinpō carried an article reporting on the graduation of priests from the main training centres for the Shinto priesthood. Overwhelmingly, this means Kokugakuin University in Tokyo and Kōgakkan University in Isë. (The other six have nineteen graduates between them, while Kokugakuin alone has 151.) The reports cover three points. The first is the shortage of priests. At Kokugakuin, 151 people qualified as priests and 109 took jobs at jinja, 102 of them as priests. (The other seven were miko or non-priest staff, and six… Read More »New Priests 2023

New Priests 2022

On April 25th, Jinja Shinpō published its standard annual review of newly qualified priests and their employment. (The Japanese academic year ends at the end of March, so that is when they graduate.) This year, 72 new priests graduated from Kōgakkan University (in Isë), ten fewer than last year, and 149 graduated from Kokugakuin University (in Tokyo), nine fewer than last year. At Kōgakkan, 58 graduates (80.5%) got jobs at jinja, over 90% of them as priests. This was also largely true of the female graduates: there were 22 graduating… Read More »New Priests 2022

New Priests 2021

Japanese graduation season has come and gone again, and, as usual, Jinja Shinpō has published an article about the new priests who graduated from the main training centres, particularly Kokugakuin and Kōgakkan Universities. At Kokugakuin, 158 people were licensed as priests, including 60 women, while at Kōgakkan there were 82, including 16 women. 108 from Kokugakuin and 68 from Kōgakkan went to work in jinja. It is notable that, of the 50 who took jobs outside Shinto, 24 were women. Given the overall proportions, this does suggest that it is… Read More »New Priests 2021

New Priests 2020

A few weeks ago, Jinja Shinpō published an analysis of the newly-graduated priests, as it always does in April. This year there were 232, including 59 women, of whom 184 took jobs at jinja. (39 of the women went to work at jinja.) The overwhelming majority of these priests graduated from the two Shinto universities, Kōgakkan in Isë (63) and Kokugakuin in Tokyo (154). As normal, the number of people going to work in jinja offices or as miko, rather than as priests, was overwhelmingly dominated by women (13 out… Read More »New Priests 2020

New Priests 2019

With the end of the Japanese academic year in March, Jinja Shinpō has published its normal analysis of newly graduated priests. This year, there were 256 altogether, of whom 61 were women. That is a slightly lower proportion than previous years, if I recall correctly. Of these, 65, including 20 women, found jobs outside Shinto. This is a serious problem for Shinto. Only the two universities give numbers for how many vacancies were reported to them, but there were 290 at Kokugakuin and 217 at Kōgakukan. I have no idea… Read More »New Priests 2019

New Priests

Jinja Shinpō has just published the statistics for new graduates of the training courses for priests, as they do every year. I wrote about these last year as well, and similar trends are continuing. This year, 74 students graduated from Kōgakkan University in Isë with a priest’s licence, of whom 46 went to work at jinja. On the other hand, 169 students were licensed by Kokugakuin University in Tokyo, of whom 120 went to work at a jinja. As always, a little under 10% went to work at their family… Read More »New Priests

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