The Rev. Stefan Jonasson, the UUA’s director of Growth Strategies and Large Congregation Development, has analyzed the annual certification data submitted by congregations each February and has created a snapshot of our congregations.

Among his findings:

• The average size of a UU congregation’s adult membership is 148.

• Twenty-eight percent of congregations reported an increase of more than three percent in adult membership in the past year and almost thirty-three percent reported declines of more than three percent.

• Declines of more than three percent were significantly more common among congregations of up to 60 members and midsize congregations (161-300) than other size categories. Growth exceeding three percent was most common among large congregations (401-600) and midsize congregations (161-300).

Jonasson concluded that, “The presence of midsize churches as a leading category for both growth and decline suggests that this is a relatively volatile category for membership when compared to others. It suggests both opportunities and problems to solve.”

Read more about Jonasson’s findings, including how congregations fared during the past decade, at the blog of the Office of Growth Strategies, called Growing Unitarian Universalism.


About the Author
Don Skinner
Don Skinner is editor of InterConnections and a member of the Shawnee Mission UU Church in Lenexa, Kansas.

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