Friday, February 29, 2008

Follow Up on Remain Episcopal

ENS has an interesting article on developments in California's San Joaquin valley. It appears that those who are remaining Episcopalian will be organizing a new diocese next month. I reckon 815 is willing to spend what it takes, as it were, to maintain an Episcopalian presence in central California.

One tidbit caught my eye out of the ENS article:

Moore noted as signs of progress the appointment of a 26-member steering committee to help continue the diocese (see roster below); 17 congregations who have opted to remain with tec; the anticipated March 29 special convention to elect a provisional bishop; establishment of new diocesan headquarters in Stockton and a partnership with Episcopal Life Media to facilitate dissemination of information and to provide a new diocesan newspaper edition. {Emphasis added}

The website for those who are Remaining Episcopal now shows eight actual congregations (counting St Nicholas which is homeless). This is an increase of two from my prior post. I had previously estimated the 2006 ASA of Remain Episcopal churches at about 470. The two new members bring the total to around 610 or 140 more. If we do not include St. Nicholas (I did not previously) then the ASA is about 570 or so.

The big question remains, who is still going to their former church? Neither ENS nor Remain Episcopal are crowing about booming attendance, so it seems safe to venture that attendance has either remained the same or declined in the Schori churches. Likewise the Schofieldistas do not seem to be celebrating overcrowded pews so the true winners may well be the churches in the neighborhood that are not affiliated with either faction.

1 comment:

Fresno Mark said...

You shouldn't guess about the things you know nothing about. Average Sunday Attendance (ASA) at Holy Family Episcopal Church, Fresno, has boomed in the last few years, and in particular in the last year. ASA in 2004 was well under 100. In 2006, it was about 120. In January 2007, the ASA was 119; in January 2008, it was 149. Most of these people are fleeing from the churches that have not (yet) decided to remain in the episcopal church, including the Cathedral, St. Columba's, and others. We are not "celebrating the overcrowded pews" because we know who caused it. We are, however, considering adding additional services because the pews are becoming "standing room only".