I can’t help noticing an intriguing disparity in interest in two stories reported over the past few days at Thinking Anglicans.
On Thursday they noted the release of 2010 church attendance statistics for the Church of England, which note a continued declining trend; Sunday attendance was down 2% in that period, while ‘weekly attendance’ (i.e. total attendance at all services held within a given week) was down slightly less. David Keen, who has been following these things carefully, notes that average attendance in the Church of England has declined 10% in the ten year period 2000-2010, and asks the perfectly reasonable question, ‘At what point is this a wake up call, or will we just hit the the ‘snooze’ button again until next years stats?’
This story has been up for two days at Thinking Anglicans and there is one – only one – comment.
Today, Thinking Anglicans posted a story about a Church of England report on ‘C of E relations with ACNA’ – that is, the Anglican Church in North America, a group which has broken away from the US Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada over a number of issues, but mainly homosexuality. Some conservative people in the Church of England want their church to recognise the ACNA as a full member of the Anglican Communion, and the report deals with this issue.
This story has been up for less than twenty-four hours and already has nineteen comments (most of them rather belligerent).
I’m just saying, that’s all…
As a footnote, I’m interested that the C of E approaches attendance statistics differently than we do in the Diocese of Edmonton. When we say ‘average attendance’, we actually mean ‘average of the whole year’ – including both the high seasons at Easter and Christmas and the low months during the summer. They, however, base their statistics on a four-week period in October. I wonder what effect this difference in methodology has on the statistics?
We’re now at 42 comments on the ACNA story and 2 on the Church Attendance story…