Diocesan Statistics for the Episcopal Diocese of Utah

Posted by Kendall Harmon

According to the U.S. Census Bureau's figures, Utah has grown in population from 2,233,169 in 2000 to 2,784,572 in 2009. This represents a population growth of approximately 24.69%.

According to Episcopal Church statistics, the Diocese of Utah went from Average Sunday Attendance (or ASA) of 1924 in 1998 to 1612 in 2008. This represents an ASA decline of about 16% over this ten year period. Please note that if you go to the link toward the end of this sentence and enter "Utah" as the name of the diocese and then "View Diocese Chart" underneath on the left you can see in pictorial form some of the data from 2009 which shows a slight increase in ASA from 2008-2009. The hard numbers for these new 2009 numbers are not yet available so far as I am aware.

The Diocese of Utah's website may be found here.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC BishopsTEC DataTEC Parishes* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry

14 Comments
Posted October 30, 2010 at 3:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Kendall Harmon wrote:

If you look at the active membership figures

http://www.episcopalchurch.org/documents/Members_by_Prov__Diocese_97-07.pdf

it shows 6,622 in 1997 and 5,424 for 2007 for a 10 year decline of just over 18%.

What I find interesting once again is the big disparity between ASA and active baptized membership, which most in parish ministry believe should be at about a 1:2 ratio on average.

October 30, 6:48 pm | [comment link]
2. AnglicanFirst wrote:

“... the Diocese of Utah went from Average Sunday Attendance (or ASA) of 1924 in 1998 to 1612 in 2008….”

Why is the Diocese of Utah even a diocese? 
If I’m not mistaken, Truro Church in Fairfax, Virginia plus The Falls Church in Falls Church, Virginia had a greater combined ASA than the Diocese of Utah when I was a parishoner of Truro Curch about six years ago.

Why aren’t the Episopal churches in Utah missionary churches of the dioceses of its adjoining states?

October 30, 7:13 pm | [comment link]
3. Statmann wrote:

Given that TEC considers itself a national church, I’m sure that its position is that it must have at least one diocese in every State. Actually, a ratio of ASA to Members of 40 percent is above average for a TEC diocese, given the TEC ratio of about 700K to 2 million. The diocese had a tough time during 2002 through 2008 with Members down 25 percent and ASA down 18 percent but had a brighter side with Plate & Pledge up 9 percent above inflation. Given these data, I ranked them at 50 out of 95 dioceses considered. Also, it had 90 Infant Baptisms and 87 Burials in 2008. And the data for 2009 shows Members, ASA, and Plate & Pledge on the increase. For 2009, the diocese has 17 of its 24 churches with Plate & Pledge of less than $150K. When all 2009 data are available, I would guess Utah at the middle of TEC but gaining a bit on the leaders.    Statmann

October 30, 8:12 pm | [comment link]
4. Sarah wrote:

Once again, Canon Harmon continues his Very Divisive rhetoric.

When will it end?  When will he become the Unifying Voice that this inclusive church needs and longs for?

October 30, 8:34 pm | [comment link]
5. A Senior Priest wrote:

Utah is a ‘diocese’ because at a certain time in TEC history they expected unlimited growth and therefore felt comfortable with creating small diocesan unites with the expectation that they would grow. Dio Utah has a gigantic endowment, which makes its continued existence inevitable.

October 30, 8:50 pm | [comment link]
6. NoVA Scout wrote:

These statistics are interesting, but I sometimes find myself wondering about the larger context.  I know that there is a particular interest in Episcopal dioceses and parishes here, but what would we find in Utah (just to use this current example) for the same period for, say, Lutheran, or Presbyterian churches?  Do these statistics reflect issues peculiar to the Episcopal Church in particular regions (or nationally) or are they part of a general trend in Protestant denominations generally (or both)?  Without some additional data, one doesn’t have enough information to sort that out.

October 30, 11:20 pm | [comment link]
7. dsh+ wrote:

Remember, according to the Presiding Bishop, the Episcopal Church is shrinking because Episcopalians are intellectually superior to, say, those Mormons in Utah who value family, and educated people aren’t concerned with having children, much less passing the faith on to them. I suppose some would say it’s a noble thing to work yourself out of a job.

October 31, 3:36 am | [comment link]
8. C. Wingate wrote:

Well, here are the 2009 PCUSA statistics, and they look depressingly familiar. Perhaps the most striking is the male/female breakouts in the deacons, which show that the housekeeping of the church is increasingly moving over to, well, women’s work. Looking at the UMC numbers, they are old but what they have can be found here. Note the last column of overseas members.

October 31, 8:35 am | [comment link]
9. Sarah wrote:

It is a general trend in the liberal mainlines [not the Southern Baptists]; TEC has the satisfying distinction, the last time these numbers were compared, of having the most precipitous decline.

But yeh . . . it’s probably for no particular reason at all as to the past 7 years, even though, you know, back as late as 2000 TEC recorded a slight growth.

October 31, 8:40 am | [comment link]
10. Pb wrote:

The decline is unacceptable regardless of the reasons.

October 31, 9:03 am | [comment link]
11. KevinBabb wrote:

Sarah, now who’s being Very Divisive (c)?  I think that you need to become a Unifying Voice.

Work on that, will ya?

October 31, 9:08 am | [comment link]
12. Sarah wrote:

What on earth are you talking about?  How could it be more unifying to announce that the most precipitious decline of all the liberal mainlines has Nothing Whatsoever To Do With Anything At All that has occurred over the past 7 years?

Surely we can all agree on this?  All Loyal Inclusive Episcopalians agree that Absolutely Nothing At All occurred to cause tens of thousands of Episcopalians to leave TEC.

And if people don’t agree with that—then I’m sure that Bishop Lamb, for instance, would agree with us all that they should Just Leave Already.

October 31, 9:32 am | [comment link]
13. SC blu cat lady wrote:

Would love it if those Epsicopagans would just leave already. That means some dioceses would be without people.  Here, that would mean that the diocese would lose perhaps 5% of the diocesan membership -not a huge problem.

October 31, 3:19 pm | [comment link]
14. John F. Floberg wrote:

#2 & #3:  The case of numeric size can be made for those of us in North Dakota, as well as many Western States.  It isn’t that we need a diocese in every state.  It has much to do with the limits in 19th century transportation.  Congregations must have connection to a bishop.  That is fundamental to our polity.  Now days bishops can fly in from where they live - maybe thousands of miles away - and through use of e-mail and teleconference can stay in pretty close contact with their priests, deacons and congregations.  Of course there are exceptions to that rule of proximity.  Alaska certainly is far flung.  In Utah and ND situations we don’t have lots of good choices in consolidating.  Where would Bismarck go?  Where would Williston end up?  Relating to one another in a diocesan structure that is stretched, like ours, is better than not being connected at all.  It is only when people are concerned about the political power of a diocese that this question gains traction.  Otherwise, the answer to the question is simply pragmatic.  We are Episcopalians.  We need bishops.  You can argue about who the bishop is, but my point is not the individual.  My point is the office of the bishop.  Episcopalians/Anglicans agree on that.

November 1, 9:28 am | [comment link]
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