'Non-mainline' Protestant churches gaining membership in United States

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fivepointcalvinist

Puritan Board Sophomore
An Arminian woman I work with felt the need to share with me today that Pentecostal denominations are the fastest growing denominations in the world. So I Googled and found this article. Just wanted to see what you guys thought the implications for Reformed denominations this brought. Why are OUR numbers not growing or are they? I have my thoughts, just curious to see what you think...

06198 April 3, 2006

'Non-mainline' Protestant churches gaining membership in United States

by Chris Herlinger Ecumenical News International

NEW YORK - Pentecostal and so-called "non-mainline" Protestant denominations are continuing to grow in the United States while mainstream churches lose membership, according to the latest annual figures from the National Council of Churches (NCC).

The largest U.S. Protestant denomination, the Southern Baptist Convention, showed a decline in membership while the Roman Catholic Church, the largest single church body, showed a slight increase.

The NCC this week released the figures in its 2006 Yearbook of American and Canadian churches.

Of the 25 largest churches in the United States, those showing the largest increases in membership were the Assemblies of God, a Pentecostal denomination, up by 1.81 percent, to 2.78 million; the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, up by 1.74 percent, to 5.99 million; and the Roman Catholic Church, up by 0.83 percent, to 67.82 million.

The Southern Baptist Convention, with 16.27 million members, reported a decrease of 1.05 percent.

Only three Protestant churches often referred to as "mainline" - the United Methodist Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) - are listed among the 10 largest churches in the United States, according to the yearbook statistics.

The United Methodist Church ranked third, with a membership of 8.19 million, a decrease of 0. 79 per cent; the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America ranked seventh with a membership of 4.93 million, a decrease of 1.09 per cent; and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) ranked ninth with a membership of 3.19 million, a decrease of 1.60 per cent.
 

Pilgrim

Puritanboard Commissioner
My understanding is that there has been tremendous growth in pentecostal type churches in Asia and Africa. That's what the recent ruckus with the Southern Baptist Convention's new guidelines for appointees to the International Mission Board was all about, that many churches had become pentecostal and thus "lost".

Of course you could simply point out the fact that the Mormons are right behind the A/G in growth (and in sheer numbers must have had more) and ask your colleague what significance she would ascribe to that!
 

gwine

Puritan Board Sophomore
In the words of Benjamin Disraeli (and I always thought it was Mark Twain who said it), "There are three kinds of lies: lies, d&%* lies, and statistics."
 
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