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Welcome to Stand Firm!

2006 TEC Membership Numbers Released

Sunday, September 30, 2007 • 8:26 am


TEC’s 2006 attendance stats are out. Click here to view.

Early observations:

- In DioTN, 86% of All Saints parish left for CANA on Nov 1, 2006, yet the chart reflects no drop in ASA.

Quick thumbnail calculations:

- In Dallas, a drop of about 12%.

- In Virginia, a drop of about 12%.

- In Florida, a drop of about 20% since 2003.

- The first drop in San Diego after 10 years of steady growth.

- The steady 6-year decline in Olympia continues.

- The steady decline in New Hampshire continues.

- Atlanta continues a 5-year slide.

- Southwest Florida’s 3-year slide seems to be accelerating.

- Utah is down 20% from 2003.

- A 12.5% decline since 2003 in Spokane

. Maine continues to slide, as does Nebraska, which has lost about 20% since 1999.

- Ohio has lost 20% since 1998.

- Northern California has lost about 22% since 2000.

- Northern Michigan is down 30% from 1999, and Eastern Michigan is down 22% from 2001.


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Comments:

Playing the devil’s advocate here.  The new St. Patrick’s congregation continued to meet in the same church building, with the tacit agreement of the Standing Committee, along with the All Saint’s remnant, into December.  Also, the temporary affiliation with first AMiA, and now permanently with CANA, came much later.  (Early 2007 ????)  One of the requirements from the SC was that they could not answer the phone as “St. Patrick’s Church.”  Sooooo, given the creative bookkeeping at TEC, it is not overly surprising that they show no change in ASA over the last 2 months of 2006.  Since the remnant of All Saint’s is so small it is back to being a mission, something will be indeed fishy if the 2007 numbers show no change.  Now, off to St. Pat’s for Mass.

APB

[1] Posted by APB on 09-30-2007 at 08:58 AM • top

Acts 5:38-39 seems to be applicable here. By now we can see the General Convention Church is of human origin and certainly failing.

[2] Posted by texex on 09-30-2007 at 08:58 AM • top

Nevada, one of the fastest growing regions in the cou try, is down in ASA.

Also interesting, Dio CNY still counts St. Andrew’s Syracuse - which is AMiA.

[3] Posted by MJD_NV on 09-30-2007 at 09:16 AM • top

I wonder when the aggregate figures (the so-called “Fast Facts”) will be released. It is obviously impossible to get precise numbers from the bar graphs maintained on the website of the Office for Congregational Development.

[4] Posted by Kevin Babb on 09-30-2007 at 09:28 AM • top

I notice in the Dio. of VA, that all of the churches that left in 2007 were not included in the 2006 numbers.  Creative bookkeeping at its finest!

[5] Posted by Crabby in MD on 09-30-2007 at 09:49 AM • top

The result of asking people to be patient that much longer than they can stand it, without strong leadership in the other direction.

[6] Posted by Cindy T. in TX on 09-30-2007 at 09:58 AM • top

They’ve done it again to All Saints’, Long Beach (and probably St. James’ Newport Beach, and St. David’s, North Hollywood.  The 2003 figures have been copied and pasted into 2004, 2005, and now, 2006. The last year they could possible have any numbers for our churches was 2003, since we left ECUSA in 2004. However, the property dispute is in the courts, so they don’t want to let go. What they don’t want the public to know is that the real membership of All Saints Episcopal Church is TWO. How can they lie like that and get away with it?

[7] Posted by Sue Martinez on 09-30-2007 at 10:15 AM • top

The attendance numbers are important to conservatives because we look at them as confirming evidence of TECs decline.  Now liberals are not ignorant of this reality. Consider. Paul Martin made the following interesting comment on Tobias Haller’s Blog:

I cannot imagine that it is yet possible for this church to thrive in some areas of the country while speaking of same sex blessings. In other parts of the country, it is not possible for the church to thrive without doing so.

link

But they see this reality through diferrent eyes.  Liberals are not stupid.  They may fudge the numbers for some momentary tactical advantage, but they know that a great swathe of TEC is going to disappear in the next 20 years.  So they expect a significant fall in numbers.  But just like a politician evaluating an electoral map, TEC will survey the landscape, and judge those who leave as an unreachable demographic.  It won’t matter much - except of course to those who become unemployed as a result.

TEC is not an evangelistic church.  It sees itself as a vanguard of a great social movement.  It therefore requires cultural influence, and not outreach.  It imagines itself as a great engine for social justice, but in this it deceives itself.  In fact it is an obsolete 60’s caboose long since abandoned on a side rail.  It watches the great secular train race by and - thinking itself an engine - imagines that one day TEC will help to pull that train.  But the modern world has no use for it.  If it were not for TECs conflict with conservatives, the modern world would pay it no notice at all.

But TECs illusion remains.  And so TEC will gladly trade an unreachable demographic for the pure unsullied voice of the vanguard.  They will say “100,000 who lead is better than 500,000 who quarrel amongst themselves.”  So we view the numbers and say “Catastrophe.”  They view the numbers and in public they will say “Tragedy.”  Privately however they will say “Good.  And Good riddance to them.” 

carl

[8] Posted by carl on 09-30-2007 at 10:30 AM • top

Yes, the amazing magic numbers. I know of a parish in NW TX that has been in distress for at least three years. They cannot afford a full-time priest and bemoan the departure of the traditionalists who were the only real tithers in the parish (hmm - such a coincidence, that). The pews that were once filled are now doing well if they are 1/4 occupied. There are no longer any distractions from little voices during the services; the programs they had for children and youth are no more, having no reason for their existence. Yet their chart is virtually unchanged from 2000 on. Magical!

[9] Posted by Dazzled on 09-30-2007 at 10:50 AM • top

Great post, carl.

[10] Posted by Phil on 09-30-2007 at 11:05 AM • top

and probably St. James’ Newport Beach

No probably about it.  Check it out for yourself.  How do they get away with that?

[11] Posted by Nevin on 09-30-2007 at 11:13 AM • top

How trustworthy are these numbers? Anyone know?

[12] Posted by TLDillon on 09-30-2007 at 11:39 AM • top

Give us a Church to attend and these numbers for the departing folks will increse greatly.  Help, help

[13] Posted by roanoker on 09-30-2007 at 11:57 AM • top

ODC-
In the case of my former parish in W. Mich, the numbers shown are exactly as we reported them (for ‘06).  The decline indicated had actually been over the course of several years, but no one had been removed from the membership roles for some time.  In reporting 06 numbers, anyone shown as a member in 05 who had not had contact with the church for a couple years was removed.  In all, it came to about 23%, so it looks like it all happened in one year, but it was probably over several years- say since 2003.
  I have been less than complimentary of the diocese on more than one occasion, but I believe they are passing on the numbers as given them by the parishes.  I would estimate that the “total membership” numbers are inflated (rectors and wardens are reluctant to “write off” parishioners when they leave), but the ASA and money numbers for the diocese are accurate to the best of my knowledge.
TJ

[14] Posted by tjmcmahon on 09-30-2007 at 12:03 PM • top

Thanks Tj
I was curious about the true accuaracy of numbers that are actually being reported. But then I guess I should remember that they will never really be 100% correct and this maybe the best we can get for the most part. Thanks again.

[15] Posted by TLDillon on 09-30-2007 at 12:08 PM • top

Dear Dazzled,

when a parish goes into decline like that there’s often nobody who thinks it their job to send in numbers, so the diocese just repeat the last figures they had.
What total memberships are Dr KJS and 815 now claiming?

[16] Posted by flabellum on 09-30-2007 at 12:18 PM • top

But there are thousands of us out here who are still attending the Episcopal Church every week.  We personally do not pledge, but have still supported the Church in other ways since 03.  I’m starting to feel guilty and would lile to have another choice.  Again, HELP

[17] Posted by roanoker on 09-30-2007 at 12:19 PM • top

So far, Florida is reporting honestly with some sad graphs, although Bishop Howard will tell you that these parishes did not leave ECUSA:

St. Michael’s—Gainesville http://12.0.101.88/reports/PR_ChartsDemo/exports/ParishRPT_930200712812PM.pdf

Grace Church—Orange Park
http://12.0.101.88/reports/PR_ChartsDemo/exports/ParishRPT_930200713300PM.pdf

and so on—

[18] Posted by James Manley on 09-30-2007 at 12:29 PM • top

James, you might have mentioned a couple of Jacksonville FL parishes (All Souls and Redeemer) which have simply dropped out of sight, which previously would have had over 1,000 ASA between them.  Actually, they still do—worshipping in rented facilities under GS bishops.  Howard was legally successful in retaining the real estate.  There are two or three (Calvary, Nativity, St James McClenny) smaller congregations around town in the same situation.  Isn’t polity wonderful!

[19] Posted by Laurence K Wells on 09-30-2007 at 12:52 PM • top

bk-
It is my hope that one of the resources soon to come from Common Cause will be a church locator or list of Anglican parishes in each region.  Many of the CC partners’ websites already have this feature (APA, AMiA, CANA can help you locate one of their parishes is your area.)
Good luck -Help is on the way!!

[20] Posted by lightonahill01 on 09-30-2007 at 01:26 PM • top

lightonahill and bk-
The ACN parish locater includes all, or almost all, of the Common Cause Partners
http://www.acn-us.org/local/
the map feature is a bit cumbersome, and if you are in a rural area, you may have to “zoom out” a couple times to locate the nearest church, but hopefully you will find a parish not too far distant.

[21] Posted by tjmcmahon on 09-30-2007 at 01:36 PM • top

Odd bit is how all the CANA & Ugandan parishes are off the Virginia website (remember most votes were in December and some in January 2007). Is this an Orwellian “un-Churched?”

[22] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-30-2007 at 02:02 PM • top

Does anyone find it curious that the figures were released AFTER the HoB meeting? No? Me, neither.

[23] Posted by rob-roy on 09-30-2007 at 02:08 PM • top

If you want an idea of what happens to a parish when a bishop changes the lock and removes the parish and vestry, compare the 2004-2006 figures here.

The ASA figures at St. John’s, Bristol, claim to be much the same, but the total membership and financial figures have plummeted.  Behold, TEC’s bright new future.

[24] Posted by William Witt on 09-30-2007 at 02:08 PM • top

If you want an idea of what happens to a parish when a bishop changes the lock and removes the parish and vestry

Whoops.  Actually the bishop only removed the priest and vestry.  The parish removed themselves.  But those ASA figures are sure interesting . . . Who are these people who supposedly attend, are apparently not members (since membership plummetted), do not pledge, and put nothing in the plate?

[25] Posted by William Witt on 09-30-2007 at 02:29 PM • top

Privately however they will say “Good.  And Good riddance to them.”

Especially if TEC keeps most of the property, and therefore most of the money.

[26] Posted by Edwin on 09-30-2007 at 02:45 PM • top

Whoops.  Actually the bishop only removed the priest and vestry.  The parish removed themselves.  But those ASA figures are sure interesting . . . Who are these people who supposedly attend, are apparently not members (since membership plummetted), do not pledge, and put nothing in the plate?


That chart doesn’t even begin to pass the smell test.  Apparently the only ones upset by the removal of the vestry and priest were those who…didn’t bother to show up on Sunday anyway?  Huh?  And those who did attend cut their giving, though they weren’t troubled by the bishop’s purge to the point of not attending?

TEC math at its finest.

[27] Posted by Jeffersonian on 09-30-2007 at 02:53 PM • top

That’s odd, we didn’t turn in a perochial report this year…we’re having nothing to do with our diocese or TEC, and yet they have stats for us.

Our ASA went up from 70 to 81 in 2006, but it looks like they just repeated the same stats from last year.

The odd thing though is that they have our plate offering going down? How could they do this when we didn’t turn anything in? Our plate offerings have been way up? Were they just repeating a pattern? How odd?

http://12.0.101.88/reports/PR_ChartsDemo/exports/ParishRPT_930200740129PM.pdf

[28] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-30-2007 at 02:59 PM • top

There does come a time where withdrawing financial support is not enough.  If you are part of the ASA numbers for the Episcopal Church, then you are being used to assert that All Is Well and only that “tiny minority” is perturbed by what’s going on.  It was when we heard a bishop throw ASA numbers out as proof that everyone’s good-to-go with TEC innovations, that we decided we needed to quit that form of support as well.

[29] Posted by VaAnglican on 09-30-2007 at 03:05 PM • top

I am suspicious of any statistic for which the bar graph has not moved an iota over a two year period of time. For example, in the case of the Church in Bristol, CT, for the last two years the diocese shows total membership of exactly 200.  I do not know of any group of two hundred people among whom, over the course of a year, there will not be a single person die/move away/transfer out. That also means that not a single person transferred into the parish, or was confirmed (easier to believe, but still unlikely).  A remarkable number of these charts show figures for all three parameters that were obviously just pulled forward to the next reporting period.

In terms of credibility, I would consider the financial figures to be the closest to accurate, the ASA to be a distant second, and the total membership in many cases to reflect merely the higher ambitions of the parochial staff.  In many cases, I would take the total membership figure not as an accurate one, but as one that reflects the highest claim that the person(s) reporting thought that he/she/they could get away with.  Even with the languid church attendance for which Episcopalians are known, I would be suspicious of parochial membership greater than about three times ASA.

Kevin+ Martin has a theory that membership figures grow because parochial clergy keep on the books not only those persons who fulfill the canonical criteria for membership, but also those person with whom the clergy percieve he/she/they still have a pastoral relationship. In other words. if the priest still talks to the adult daughter of long-deceased Mrs. Smith when he runs into her at the grocery store, even though the daughter hasn’t been to church since her teen years, he will keep her on the rolls.

For years before 2003, I interpret a precipitous drop in membership to be the result of a new priest coming in and cleaning out the books.  I have other explanations for such developments in later years.

[30] Posted by Kevin Babb on 09-30-2007 at 03:23 PM • top

“The odd thing though is that they have our plate offering going down? How could they do this when we didn’t turn anything in? Our plate offerings have been way up? Were they just repeating a pattern? How odd?”

Well, I guess when they don’t have the data, or the data does not reflect positively on their agenda, they just make up the data. 

Yeah, right—It doesn’t even pass the smell test. 

DUH…

[31] Posted by Passing By on 09-30-2007 at 04:13 PM • top

The billable-hour rate for lawyers and CPA’s just shot up.  Enjoy your new boats and McMansions, guys.

[32] Posted by bigjimintx on 09-30-2007 at 04:29 PM • top

Checked numbers for six dioceses (and several parishes in five of them) with which I am familiar.  The ASA numbers for all six are down slightly to very slightly.  Of all the parishes I checked, only one had a slight increase (as best as I can tell from the charts) from 2005 (I checked about 20).  Pledges holding up better.

My own gut feeling is that the ASA numbers are worse than the charts show.  I believe there are a few reasons.  I believe clergy fudge the numbers (say it isn’t true!).  It’s oh-so-easy to just round up a few or 10 or 30 or so, sure that the ushers missed some folks.  After all, they do not call it the “pinocchio report” for nothing.

My prediction is that the numbers will tank badly next year.  As more interims and new rectors come in and are forced to straighten out the sunday counts (they know they can’t show an increase on their own watch if the numbers are inflated 10-15% to begin with), the real numbers will emerge.  Plus, as the withdrawing parishes are slowly taken off the books, the numbers will decline further.  Hold on to your hats.

[33] Posted by RealityCheck on 09-30-2007 at 04:41 PM • top

to Kevin Babb:
the way a chart can legitimately stay at 200 is, for example, if 10 people leave and 10 new people come.  Still at 200. Entirely possible, in fact, probable at many parishes.

[34] Posted by RealityCheck on 09-30-2007 at 04:47 PM • top

Greg: check Northern Cal and No. Michigan - when you click on these links, other diocesan charts pop up.

[35] Posted by RealityCheck on 09-30-2007 at 04:50 PM • top

Reality Check, I would rephrase your language just slightly.  It is possible ten people could have left and exactly ten joined, it’s not probable.  I’ve played with data for long enough to know that that is the case.  Considering the broader tale of this data it would be like feeling sorry about all the fine china on the Titanic being broken as the ship slips under the waves…

[36] Posted by rwkachur on 09-30-2007 at 06:46 PM • top

St. John’s in Melbourne (CFL) - which lost 2/3 of its congregation shows absolutely no change.  We spot checked a couple of churches we know “stuff” about and not all the figures are accurate either.  One church we used to go to in Arkansas in the late ‘90’s showed Worshp at over 100.  We never saw more than 20-30 people.  EVER.  So the decline percentages are probably higher since attendance seems to be inflated.

[37] Posted by The Lakeland Two on 09-30-2007 at 07:07 PM • top

It is interesting that one of the few points of comfort for Rob “I beat up gracious retiring bishops” O’Neill in Colorado was Holy Comforter that WAS doing quite nicely.

[38] Posted by rob-roy on 09-30-2007 at 07:25 PM • top

The correct link to N. Michigan is: N MIchigan (hope that works)  If anyone knows of an orthodox (preferably Anglo Catholic) congregation in or near Sault Ste Marie (US or Canada) please let me know.
TJ
PS- <u>EVERY</u> diocese I have looked at so far has not faired well over the last couple years (although frequently pledges are up, I wonder if they have diverted Sarah’s IRD money).  Are there ANY diocese that are showing increased membership?

[39] Posted by tjmcmahon on 09-30-2007 at 07:37 PM • top

tjmcm:  have searched about 20 so far and only one with increase last decade is Tenn.

[40] Posted by RealityCheck on 09-30-2007 at 07:59 PM • top

Tennessee and South Carolina both showed slight increases of just under 1%.

[41] Posted by Barbara Gauthier on 09-30-2007 at 08:02 PM • top

tj. don’t forget to check http://www.shelterinthestorm.org

I don’t know as to N. Michigan, but we do list some ECUSA churches that have taken an orthodox stand, here and there, IF they request it, and it checks out OK.

Grannie Gloria

[42] Posted by Grandmother on 09-30-2007 at 08:06 PM • top

I doubt 2006 numbers are going to show drama, because there wasn’t much drama that the average pew sitter knew about. 2006 GC was HUGE to those that are interested in church politics but off the radar screen for most in typical churches.

The virtually irreversible time bomb is all the old folks who have had their peace with whatever went on in NH a few years ago won’t be replaced by young families.  The loss of Christian conviction in TEC will simply result in a steady drip drip of decline as demographics do their thing.

Of course, 2007 will be a big drop in (honest) ASA given the minor deluge of parishes large and small leaving.

[43] Posted by Reason and Revelation on 09-30-2007 at 08:10 PM • top

tjmcmahon:

EVERY diocese I have looked at so far has not faired well over the last couple years (although frequently pledges are up, I wonder if they have diverted Sarah’s IRD money).

That seems to be a very common pattern over the past 5 years or so, and I wonder how it can be explained?  Fewer people, but more money; it seems to me quite contradictory.  Have the parishioners adjusted their giving for inflation, but the charts show everything as if they’re in constant dollars?  Have a lot of people started dying in the last 5 years, and leaving bequests?  Are parishes liquidating investments and using it to run the plant?  I don’t understand it.  Maybe parishes are running special appeals (for a new organ, new roof, renovations, etc.) and people are making extra efforts to respond, but it’s odd that it should be happening across the board.

[44] Posted by Dr. Mabuse on 09-30-2007 at 08:19 PM • top

RealityCheck:  I’ll concede that your hypothesis is possible, but I can’t believe that it is probable for such a thing to occur.

[45] Posted by Kevin Babb on 09-30-2007 at 08:23 PM • top

Sure, there are some obviously problems with the numbers, but TEC should be commended again for being forthright in publishing these figures (although it is clear why they waited till after the HOB meeting!).

I wonder how far this decline will go until it levels off.  I never see TEC growing again, because the prevailing theology doesn’t support evangelism and offers little to those seeking answers to life’s big questions. However, I suspect there will be an irreducible core of people that will remain attracted by the artistically pleasing service structure and music and the architecture of many of the buildings. 

My guess is that the decline will continue until TEC, nationally, loses about ½ of the members it had ten years ago, and then levels off to a slower rate of decline.

[46] Posted by Going Home on 09-30-2007 at 09:27 PM • top

Dr. Mabuse et al,

About 5 years ago, my first year of ministry, I attended a conference in FL called “Start up/Start over” led by Kirk Hadaway, Kevin Martin et al (it was Feb 2003 I think).

In any case, they explained that when a church is in the process of dying, you will generally see a curious X in the statistics. The pledge/plate offerings show dramatic increase while the attendance begins to plummet. The reason for this is natural enough. As the ASA (Average Sunday Attendance) begins a steady, steepening decline, the core congregation, the pledge-base, is faced with a choice: radical change leading to possible resucitation or continued stasis and death. The more dramatic the decline the more radical change is necessary.

Most congregations choose stasis and death. But in making that (unconscious) decision, those who make up the pledge-base inevitably begin to increase their pledges. Why? While they are unwilling to permit anything more than cosmetic change, they do recognise that the parish is in trouble. They are, literally, throwing money at the problem. The resulting rise in offerings serves to provide some psychological comfort to the core…“So we are smaller than we used to be, but with an income like this we’ll be here for a long time…” but since giving at such a high level cannot be maintained interminably and since there will be no replentishing influx of new members, a consistent, year to year, reverse “X” in the graph generally indicates a doomed congregation.

In a vibrant and growing parish, the reverse is often the case. You will see declining pledge and plate as the ASA swells. There is a reason for this. Generally new members and new converts do not give substantially until around their third year in a given parish. Moreover, as new converts come in some of core pledge base, naturally, begin to leave. You hear things like: “This is just not the church I remember growing up. What happened to ‘my’ church?” “All these new people are changing everything” “Most of these new people aren’t even Episcopalian and some of them are sitting in my family’s pew”. The ASA begins to rise dramatically as new congregants and converts are added (growth begets growth). Butthe pledge/plate falls because the core, at least those within the core who had previously inhibited growth or would like to do so begin to leave when they realize that the congregation is no longer “their” church. In this case, the “X”, a rise in ASA and a decline in pledge/plate offering, is a positive sign, a sign of new birth. And, over time, the plate/pledge will begin to rise as the older core is replaced with a new one.

[47] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 10-01-2007 at 05:41 AM • top

Interesting analysis by Father Matt. To those who don’t know, Kirk Hadaway one the coference presenter’s is the TEC’s official statistician.  These conferences are still ongoing with information here.

Going Home writes, “I wonder how far this decline will go until it levels off.” We have a macabre saying in medicine that all bleeding eventually stops. This is usually said during surgery when one has just injured a major vessel and one is feverishly trying to repair it before the patient bleeds out. The phrase “bleeds out” is a bit of a misnomer because when the pressure drops to zero, the heart stops pumping and the bleeding ceases which is not at the point where the blood volume is zero. So yes, the bleeding of the Episcopal church will stop when it fully loses it’s heart but there will be only static stragglers remaining.

Also, you commended the church for presenting these statistics. It is clear that the TEC regrets being stuck with this precedent and now they do their best to minimize it by fudging the stats as well as selecting the release dates to minimize its damning impact.

[48] Posted by rob-roy on 10-01-2007 at 06:21 AM • top

Thanks very much for this Matt - it answers a lot of questions.  I’d been wondering about this for some time, as it seems to be a common phenomenon in Anglican and Episcopal churches.  Without any knowledge of the dynamics, I couldn’t explain it myself, except that I had a vaguely primitive instinct about the dying process in human beings - there way there is often that last little rally of strength, a brief moment of feeling good, before expiring, and I thought this might be something similar.

[49] Posted by Dr. Mabuse on 10-01-2007 at 08:22 AM • top

Don’t worry, folks, all pensions are safe!

[50] Posted by Reason and Revelation on 10-01-2007 at 09:56 AM • top

I don’t believe the NH figures. Granted, most of the NH orthodox left quickly in 2003. But I suspect much more of a decline than TEC admits to, even in VGR’s home turf. I also know of many, many, “Episcopalians” who no longer attend the local “churches.”

Many of those still “inside” are there for political reasons or because of the buildings. Unfortunately, our area still caters to the “politically correct” in several mainstream denominations. A few people might be unwilling to give that up for Christ - which tells me a lot about their loyalties.

[51] Posted by NancyNH on 10-01-2007 at 10:19 AM • top

Matt
your analysis right-on. 
the hangers-on pay through the nose to keep the priest in the pulpit and the electric bill on.  Eventually this will come to a crashing halt, but it keeps the parish in the game for oh, say, another ten years.  Until all the little white haired ladies and their money are gone.

[52] Posted by RealityCheck on 10-01-2007 at 04:48 PM • top

Take a look at All Saints’ Pasadena, home of Susan Russell.  Something’s way out of whack. (Sorry, the website seems to be down at the moment, so I can’t give you a link.)  Their “member” column looks to be about 7400 and their ASA column looks about 1400.  Now, 1400 is a pretty good number to get through your doors on any given Sunday, but it’s only about 19% of the baptized membership.  What could be the explanation?  1) They haven’t culled their rolls for the dead, moved, transferred, etc. in the last decade, 2) They’re offering drive-through baptisms with a premium, 3) They’re claiming everyone on any mailing list, including all 2000 members of Integrity. 4) They’ve fudged the numbers.

[53] Posted by Sue Martinez on 10-01-2007 at 04:57 PM • top

strange, I’ve found that the statistics are offline as well . . .

David Bailey+

[54] Posted by David Bailey on 10-01-2007 at 09:25 PM • top

David+  Maybe they think we’re having way too much fun with their statistics. Oops, I need an emoticon here and they’re missing.  Oh, well.  :=]

[55] Posted by Sue Martinez on 10-01-2007 at 09:39 PM • top

The numbers for our parish, St Paul’s Modesto CA, are on the money for our reports submitted in the past few years.  I was on vestry and the numbers look right.  The site does appear to be down for now.  Bummer.  We had a large culling of the roster a few years ago.  In the past, delegates at convention were determined by membership.  A previous Rector made sure we were well represented.  I think we changed to delegates based on assessment amount (based on budget).  No incentive to pack the roles.

[56] Posted by usma87 on 10-01-2007 at 09:49 PM • top

If you use a link from this site to go to a specific chart, you can still get there.  But the search feature that allows you to find a diocese or parish for which you don’t have a link isn’t working (or has been disabled!?!)  Nah, they couldn’t possibly have anything to hide, could they?

[57] Posted by ToAllTheWorld on 10-01-2007 at 11:32 PM • top

St. Paul’s Modesto is in San Joaquin diocese.  Not surprising that you have an honest accounting—you have an honest bishop.

Hmm.  “Pack the rolls?” in order to have more delegates to diocesan convention?  I wonder how they do it in L.A.  You could send a lot of delegates and throw a lot of weight around if you claim 7400/1400 members like All Saints’ Pasadena.

[58] Posted by Sue Martinez on 10-01-2007 at 11:45 PM • top

Thanks Matt.  We were wondering about the numbers seeming so out of whack.  Dh was on our vestry and he tells me that of the 30 or so members still in attendance, it seems that a few have very deep pockets and so can keep things afloat for a while.  A glance at the online newsletter seems to indicate that there is quite a bit of extra fundraising going on—much more than when we were there 3 years ago.

Also, I too noticed the lack of availability of the numbers.  Too, too coincidental.

Susan

[59] Posted by Summersnow on 10-02-2007 at 06:57 AM • top

When I select a Chart all I get is the message “The page cannot be found”. I clicked on “Help and Feedback” to send an email but that appears to not be working also.

[60] Posted by Janis on 10-02-2007 at 10:55 AM • top

They’ve been inoperable since yesterday afternoon.  I think they discovered that we were having too much fun with them.  Read the posts above yours, and you’ll see that you’re not the only one.

[61] Posted by Sue Martinez on 10-02-2007 at 11:01 AM • top

I’m starting to get concerned that a major illness has struck “815” and that’s why the links haven’t been repaired . . .

[62] Posted by David Bailey on 10-02-2007 at 02:38 PM • top

Note that the site doesn’t seem to work by permitting a search to existing parochial reports, but rather generates a file on-demand, and returns a link to the just generated file.  Observe the pattern in the filename contains a pattern which looks like month day year hour minute second am/pm.  The pattern appears to be the date/time eastern when the report was created by clicking on the submit button.  As I recall from previous years, most files only remain on the server for a few days, and must be regenerated after they expire.

Of course the fact that no new files can be generated is an entirely different issue.  Rather that going with some kind of conspiracy, I’m going to go with the theory that the server is being flooded with requests to generate new reports.  Perhaps it will be functioning again in a few days?

[63] Posted by Hal Duston on 10-02-2007 at 04:30 PM • top

Drat!  I was curious to see how Newark (and St. Paul’s Chatham) were doing.

[64] Posted by The Pilgrim on 10-03-2007 at 08:02 AM • top

The charts are back on line.

Newark has 33,000 on the rolls, with an ASA of 10,000. Ms. Kaeton’s church has a count of 625, with app. 100 asa.

[65] Posted by The Pilgrim on 10-03-2007 at 06:44 PM • top

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