Question >> “do u know a place to get stats on how many churches close a day, month, year etc and the same on pastors and leaders leaving ministry?”djchuang >> Good question. (And, in case you can’t tell, this question came in via a text message.)
The latest research on church attendance can be found in The American Church in Crisis by David T. Olson, with research based on data from 200,000+ churches. And, the U.S. Religious Landscape Survey by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, has analysis based on interviews with 35,000+ American adults.
Here’s some other statistics I found (so far):
Excerpted from this Christian Century 2008 article, Church-closing rate only one percent:
A new study finds that only 1 percent of U.S. religious congregations go out of existence each year, “which is among the lowest mortality rates ever observed for any type of organization,” according to an article to be published in the June issue of the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion.American church statistics have reported [via Goodmanson]:
Dave Olson’s research shows that in the 1990s about 3,200 churches closed each year–or 1.1 percent of U.S. Christian congregations. And, Olson added, “In the 2000s, it has been 3,700 a year.” [cf. graph]
- In America, 3500 – 4000 churches close their doors each year
- Half of all churches last year did not add one new member through conversion growth
- Churches lose an estimated 2,765,000 people each year to nominalism and secularism
Excerpted from The Condition of the Church in America, complied by Andy McAdams [via #mmi, 2005]:
- 1,400 pastors in America leave the ministry monthly.
- Only 15% of churches in the United States are growing and just 2.2% of those are growing by conversion growth.
- 10,000 churches in America disappeared in a five-year period.
One blog post attributed these findings to Shiloh Place Ministries (shilohplace.org), which drew its information from Focus on the Family, Ministries Today, Charisma Magazine, TNT Ministries, and other respected groups:
- 1,500 pastors leave the ministry permanently each month in America.
- 7,000 churches close each year in America.