Recent Statistics for the Episcopal Diocese of Nebraska

According to the U.S.Census Bureau’s figures, Nebraska has grown in population from 1,711,263 in 2000 to 1,826,341 in 2010. This represents a population growth of approximately 6.7% in this time frame. (Of passing interest, please note that the population of the United States as a whole went from 281,421,906 in 2000 to 308,745,538 in 2010, an overall American growth for the decade of 9.7%).

According to Episcopal Church statistics, the Diocese of Nebraska went from Average Sunday Attendance (or ASA) of 4,022 in 2000 to 2,814 in 2010. This represents a decline of 30.0% during this decade.

To see a pictorial representation of some of the statistics for the diocese of Nebraska you may examine the graph here.


Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Bishops, TEC Data, TEC Parishes

7 comments on “Recent Statistics for the Episcopal Diocese of Nebraska

  1. A Senior Priest says:

    It’s because nobody is buying what they’re selling. Simple.

  2. Statmann says:

    The long-term picture is even more bleak with Marraiges down 42 percent and Infant Baptisms down 38 percent. In 2010 there were only 59 Marraiges for 54 churches. Strangely, thr diocese has two cathedrals. Trinity in Omaha is struggling with ASA (in 2010) of 185 (seats 400) and Plate & Pledge of only $200K. St Mark in Hastings is in steep decline with ASA of 50 (in 2010 with seats for 200) which is a 50 percent decline since 2002. And Plate & Pledge in 2010 was only $120K. The diocese has closed 5 churches since 2002. More closures are certain. Statmann

  3. KevinBabb says:

    To me, the interesting thing about that chart is the fact that there do not appear to be any drastic numerical discontinuities from year to year, as one might see if the decline was event-driven. Instead, there just seems to be a steady downward drift. Does this graph reflect a demographic phenomenon, Statmann?

  4. Uh Clint says:

    Are there any statistics available to show the average age of members/attendees during this period? There’s a much different meaning to the decline if the membership drop is due to death of elderly members, as opposed to departure of current members. I’d suspect that the former is the case, based on the sparseness of marriages and baptisms – the people who founded the churches are dying off and no one new is coming in to replace them, plus their children aren’t getting married and having children, which makes it hard to maintain a steady level of core members.

  5. Yebonoma says:

    Would it help any if the Fish and Wildlife Service declared Episcopalians to be covered by the Endangered Species Act of 1973? 🙂

  6. Statmann says:

    Kevin: You have correctly described the linear pattern of Members and ASA. The numerical loss each year is almost constant which means that the percentage loss each year is increasing. That is bad news. And, yes, Burials are much larger than Infant Baptisms. Overall, very bad news. Quite simply that the elderly are dying off and the young families are leaving. This is particularly painful for the rural communities. And the diocese has about 75 percent of its churches with ASA of less than 65. The chance of growth for these small churches is very low. The future is many closures with TEC surviving in a large city like Omaha which is the future of TEC on the national level. Statmann

  7. evets18 says:
    Since all statistics are relative, the above link, which shows American Religious Identification Survey data, gives some perspective on the loss of membership/affiliation in other denominations. In addition, the ARIS data shows that the Roman Catholic Church went from 29% of the Nebraska population in 1990 to 22% in 2008, despite an influx of Hispanics into the state.

    I don’t wish to be critical of other denominations, only point out that without any context, your fixation only on Episcopal Church data is misleading.