Sunday, February 20, 2011

LDS Church growth rate slows, remains fourth largest U.S. denomination

Excerpts of Witnesses, Adventists outpace LDS growth,  by Kristen Moulton, The Salt Lake Tribune
The Jehovah's Witnesses, the 20th-largest denomination, swelled by 4.37 percent from 2008 to 2009 for a total of 1,162,686 members
The Seventh-day Adventist Church grew by 4.31 percent and moved into the top-25 denominations, with 1,043,606 members
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints remained one of the fastest-growing U.S. faiths, although its rate slowed to 1.42 percent, according to the new yearbook.
The LDS Church reported
6,058,907 members in the United States in 2009, making it the fourth-largest denomination, the same spot it has held for several years.
David Stewart, a researcher of Mormon growth, said the council's research method — allowing churches to report their numbers — is flawed because the comparisons end up being "apples to oranges."
While the Jehovah's Witnesses and Seventh-day Adventists report active, involved members, the LDS Church claims fallen-away Mormons as well.
"We keep people on the rolls forever, until they die or are excommunicated," he said. "So the church-claimed statistics can be a little unhelpful."

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