Growth in Membership and Giving

RELIGIOUS WORLD TRENDS: Growth in Membership and Giving

Report on incomes of various denominations

Assistant Treasurer of the General Conference.

The United Stewardship Council publishes a report of the membership and giving of fifteen leading Protestant denominations covering a period of twenty-five years, from 1925 to 1949 inclusive. The average increase in membership for the entire group is 36 per cent, and the increase in offerings averages 80 per cent. The Southern Baptists head the list with a 67 per cent increase in membership and a 319 per cent increase in contributions. No other denomination reaches the 200 per cent mark. Those exceeding 100 per cent are: Church of the Brethren, 184 per cent increase in gifts; Evangelical United Brethren, 129 per cent; United Lutheran, 126 per cent; and Presbyterian, U.S., 130 per cent.

The United Lutherans are next to the Southern Baptists in increase in membership, showing a 58 per cent gain during the twenty-five- year period. Next is the Church of the Brethren, 53 per cent; Presbyterian, U.S., 42 per cent; and Protestant Episcopal, 39 per cent.

Seventh-day Adventists are not included in this report. Looking up our own figures, we find that the membership in North America for the year 1925 was 108,802; for 1949, it was 243,193, or a gain of 123.52 per cent. During this period gifts increased from $8,341,920 to $33,333,109, or 299.58 per cent. This includes tithe and all offerings for all purposes. We therefore appear to be far ahead of the fifteen denominations listed by the United Steward ship Council in the matter of membership increase, and second only to the Southern Baptists in the increase in gifts.

 

 

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Assistant Treasurer of the General Conference.

September 1950

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