David Crawford Chimes In

From here:

How are the numbers in the Episcopal Church calculated? How can we have well over 2 million members, of which well over 1 million are members in good standing, and still only have 700,000 attending the church on Sunday? If I only go to church twice a year am I considered a member in good standing? These numbers are shocking, and we are reduced to a level of participation equal to that of a fringe group.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Data

5 comments on “David Crawford Chimes In

  1. Dilbertnomore says:

    Always remember, with TEC it’s not the gross numbers we should focus on, it’s the quality of the spiritual experience that counts.

  2. Creighton+ says:

    The numbers have not made statistical sense for some time. This is part of the intentional self deception of the leadership of the Episcopal Church. As most note, many priests do not clear out the roles of people who have not attended in years. Why? Simple. It makes them look bad. Stats are only as good as those who keep them. After several years at my current Church, after efforts to locate and contact numerous people who were on the rolls, I cleared them out. I was asked what happened. The answer was nothing. These people have not attended and not inactive they no longer existed. Of course, our numbers on the Parochial Report went down drastically that year, but they are accurate.

    The best stat of all is Average Sunday Attendance. This is what the 700,000 is about. It is about folks who are members and committed to their Christian Faith and attend throughout the year. People who attended twice a year are not members…nor are they committed to Christ. They believe something of the Christian Faith but they are missing the fullness of the Gospel and that Christians are called to be part of a faith community. Christian cannot be faithful to Christ on their own. There are two arms to the Cross the vertical representing our relationship with Christ and the horizontal representing our relationship with each other. Both are required.

    Note that word, required. It is not optional. A bone on its own can’t stand…and an ember out of the fire goes cold. Is there any wonder why so many are struggling in their faith these days?

  3. Bishop Daniel Martins says:

    Actually, a ratio of 10:7 between Members in Good Standing and Sunday Attendance is pretty good. “Good Standing” is defined in the canons: “Faithful in corporate worship in the Lord’s day [b][i]unless for good cause prevented,[/i][/b] and in working, praying, and giving for the spread of the Kingdom of God.” Of course, “good cause” is nowhere defined, so it becomes an entirely subjective call on the part of the clergy when they fill out the parochial report. I consider myself more draconian than most priests (the number of members in my parish has gone drastically down since I accepted the call 18 months ago, but attendance has gone up!), but if I see someone in church 35 Sundays a year or so, I’m very likely to consider them in good standing without inquiring too closely into where they are the other 17.

  4. francis says:

    But not 20:7, that’s wishful thinking.

  5. Statmann says:

    Taking Members at about 2 million and ASA at about 700 thousand produces an Attendance Percentage of 35. If one believes that the “true” number is 40 percent, that would put Members at about 1.75 million. This would imply that Members were being overstated by about 250,000. Having viewed numerous TEC Charts, I would say that this may be high. However, I would accept any number between 100 and 200 thousand. This subject is more important than one might think, as I believe that TEC dreads the day it must accept that it has fewer than 2 million Members. Statmann