Bucking National Trend, Diocese of South Carolina Experiences Growth in 2011

At a time when the Episcopal Church is experiencing serious decline (with a projected loss of an estimated 27,000 members in 2011*), the Diocese of South Carolina experienced growth. Average Sunday attendance as well as membership, communicants, and parish giving all reflect an increase over 2010, according to the parochial reports received from its parishes.

“This growth brings glory to our Lord and witnesses to the faithful ministry of the priests, deacons and laity within this diocese as they share the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” said the Rt. Rev. Mark J. Lawrence, Bishop of South Carolina, when presented with the figures.

Average Sunday attendance in the Diocese increased 10.8% from 11,086 to 12,286. In comparison, the average Sunday attendance in the Episcopal Church USA (ECUSA) was projected to show a decline of slightly less than 12,000, or about -1.8%.

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Posted in * South Carolina

11 comments on “Bucking National Trend, Diocese of South Carolina Experiences Growth in 2011

  1. dwstroudmd+ says:

    This is probably actionable by KJS. How dare ya’ll have POSITIVE growth with that traditional Gospel stuff when the gozpell of TEc is producing SIGNIFICANT NEGATIVE GROWTH by comparison. There oughta be a canon against it somewhere.

  2. Archer_of_the_Forest says:

    South Carolina must have missed the TEC “All is Well” memo ago. Numbers are supposed to go down.

  3. Ryan Danker says:

    Great news!

  4. francis says:

    Superb. The main thing must be the main thing. The Gospel of conversion, pastoral care and discipleship.

  5. Sarah says:

    RE: “Average Sunday attendance in the Diocese increased 10.8% from 11,086 to 12,286.”


    Some of those folks are clawing across the border from the Diocese of Georgia and Upper South Carolina, guys! ; > )

    I’m wondering now if you’re also getting people from the Diocese of East Carolina.

  6. qharbour says:

    Sarah asked in 4 if people from the Diocese of East Carolina might be coming to the Diocese of South Carolina, I can tell you of my own experience. I lived in Elizabeth City NC, which is in the Diocese of East Carolina, and my impression of Bishop Daniels is he has a big ego, thinks he is Gods gift to the people of the world. I was in attendance on the Sunday Daniels came to Elizabeth City, and he chastise the congregation for not paying more money to the Diocese and for having the wrong colored vestments on the alter. What a loser.

  7. Archer_of_the_Forest says:

    I was looking at applying to a church in the Diocese of East Carolina last year. I can’t speak to their theology, but I withdrew my application because I got the impression from e-mails and phone calls from primarily the Canon to the Ordinary and once or twice from the Bishop that they had some control issues. They were asking me to sign a loyalty pledge and all this stuff, and it put up all sorts of red flags for me. I even questioned the Canon on one minute thing in the handbook for new clergy because the wording was vague (I can’t even remember now what it was), and he really got huffy about it. At which point I said thanks by no thanks. I don’t need a micro-managing bishop. If you can’t trust me to do my job, then how I am suppose to trust you?

  8. Statmann says:

    Based on changes in Members, ASA, and Plate & Pledge adjussted for inflation for 2002 through 2009, Dio of SC ranked ONE of 95 conidered. Then for 2002 through 2010 it fell to THREE because it lost its (I believe) largest parish (Tenn was ONE and East Carolina was Two.) But the robust stats above may have SC regaining its number ONE status for 2002 through 2011. Statmann

  9. SC blu cat lady says:

    I am glad that the diocese is doing well. If TEC is truly interested in stemming losses in both people and money, they should send someone here not to look into legal action against the diocese but to learn how to grow and make Biblical Anglicans for a Global Age. I am not holding my breath……

  10. MichaelA says:

    Great to see.

    Strong principled leadership leads to enthusiastic parishioners and converts. Keep up the good work.

  11. SC blu cat lady says:

    Yes, St. Andrews, Mt. Pleasant, decided to leave the Diocese in 2010. Whether this was the largest parish at the time, I don’t know.