Washington D.C., Apr 10, 2015 / 02:14 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The numbers are in: almost 600 Catholic men will be ordained priests for the U.S. in 2015, an increase of more than 100 from last year.

Bishop Michael F. Burbidge of Raleigh, N.C. said April 7 that the increase in ordination numbers is “encouraging.”

The bishop, who heads the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, noted that those to be ordained cited positive influences like “very high” support from their family, parish priests and Catholic schools.

The 595 men to be ordained in 2015 is an increase of 25 percent from 2014, when 477 men were ordained to the priesthood. In 2013, 497 men were ordained Catholic priests, the U.S. bishops’ conference reports.

Read more via Catholic News Agency (CNA).