The UMC General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) announces that general statistical information about the denomination, formerly contained in the printed General Minutes, is now available online at www.umdata.org.
GCFA’s IT and Data Services departments, working throughout the connection, collect statistics and have developed a free, online resource that anyone can use to access public information about local churches.
Because of the time (and cost?) needed to vet information and produce bound hard copies, the General Minutes is no longer in print. The thick volume of comprehensive statistical reports, first published in 1785 and most recently published in 2008, has been a tool used by church leaders, ministerial students, statisticians and the denomination for access to public church statistics. The General Minutes usually required a two-year production process that has been shortened because of the development of the UMData site.
Information available at www.umdata.org includes:
GCFA has vetted and released the 2014 statistical data on local churches in the U.S. The Data Services Department has responsibility for receiving, vetting, and publishing the information each year.
GCFA Data Services reports there are over 32,000 local churches. The largest church in the U.S., Windsor Village UMC in Houston, Texas, reported 17,676 members. The highest reported average worship attendance is nearly 9,000 worshipers a week at Church of the Resurrection in Kansas.
There was a slight decrease in African-American and White membership in the Church. The United Methodist Church experienced an increase of 8.5% in multi-racial members. Pacific Islander membership increased 6.24%. Asian, Hispanic, and Native American membership grew as well. The global United Methodist Church reports about 12 and a half million members (12,428,000).
The Data Services Department will post more reports on attendance and related statistics online within the next few weeks. Much of the data is also available at www.umdata.org.