Friday, June 02, 2006

Stated Clerk Releases 2005 Statistics

Office of the General Assembly:
Stated Clerk Releases 2005 Statistics
Membership is down, giving is up

"...At the end of 2005, there were 2,313,662 active, confirmed members in the PC(USA), a net loss of 48,474. The total membership was 3,098,842. This includes 318,291 baptized but not confirmed members (mostly children) and 466,889 inactive members. ..."

"...Total giving in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) topped three billion dollars for the first time. Total gifts to the church were $3,073,684,927, an increase of $146,872,634 (slightly over 5%). Adjusted for membership loss, the average church member gave 7% more to the church in 2005 than the year before. ..."
These mixed statistics were mentioned when the General Assembly Council issued its Mission Work Plan for 2007-2008, but the Stated Clerk has now provided figures.

The loss of 48,474 seems a bit higher than in years past, but I don't know for sure. In any case, even if the raw amount stayed level, we'd still be heading in the wrong direction.

At the same time, total giving increased by 5% over the previous year, and this is a sign of hope. We were told at our recent presbytery meeting that much of this increase goes for mission -- but is not passed through Louisville.

Mission IS being carried out, and the GAC and current moderator recognize that the central administration of the PC(USA) is not where it is happening, nor is it where it SHOULD happen.

The PC(USA) is in a crisis on more than one level, and I hope the Mission Work Plan is taken seriously at all levels, and that people work together to "exhibit the Kingdom of Heaven to the world."

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