Contra Expectations, Anglican Numbers Largely Hold Steady in 2020

Jun 26, 2021 by

by Jeffrey Walton, Juicy Ecumenism:

Anglicans are reporting better-than-expected numbers for 2020. The Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) kept the same number of congregations from 2019 to 2020 (972) and only saw slight declines in membership and attendance.

Membership dipped from 127,624 in 2019 to 126,760 in 2020, a loss of 864 persons (0.68%), while attendance dropped from 84,310 in 2019 to 83,119 in 2020, a loss of 1,191 (1.4%). In-person attendance was measured during the months of January and February due to COVID restrictions that limited in-person church services for much of the remaining year. A larger drop had been expected, explained ACNA Director of Communications the Rev. Canon Andrew Gross, as the customarily well-attended holy days of Christmas and Easter were not included.

The numbers were made available at the annual ACNA Provincial Council held at the Billy Graham Training Center in Asheville, North Carolina June 15-16. The Council has a governing role in the Anglican province and includes four delegates (diocesan bishop, clergy and two lay members) from each of the denomination’s 29 dioceses and special jurisdictions/missionary districts (I serve as a lay delegate from the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic and recently completed a three-year term on the denomination’s Executive Committee).

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