The latest figures released by the Southern Baptist Convention hold good news for those who value science, knowledge and an end to religious based bigotry: the denomination again has experienced a loss in membership, church attendance is down and so are baptisms. While the number of churches is purportedly up, some of the congregations must be small indeed. Most ironically, the SBC leadership blames the decline of the denomination on lack of prayer and a failure to get the SBC's message out. Truth be told, the SBC's message of hate, fear, intolerance and the embrace of ignorance is getting out all too well and is fueling the exodus. If we are lucky, the delusional leadership will continue to drive the SBC towards extinction. Here are some of the figures released via the Baptist Press:
[T]he churches lost more than 200,000 members, the biggest one-year decline since 1881, according to the Annual Church Profile (ACP) compiled by LifeWay in cooperation with Baptist state conventions. Average attendance, baptisms and giving also declined.As I said, all good news. The SBC continues to have strong ties with white segregationists and is among the most homophobic denominations in America. Its demise would be a divine blessing, if you will, on the America.
One of the biggest declines last year was Southern Baptist church membership, which fell 1.5 percent to 15.5 million -- still the largest Protestant denomination by far, but at the lowest level since 1993. Weekly worship attendance declined 2.75 percent to 5.67 million Sunday worshippers.
Baptisms declined for the third year in a row, although the rate held steady with one baptism for every 51 members. Churches recorded 5,067 fewer baptisms, a decrease of 1.63 percent to 305,301. Reported baptisms have fallen eight of the last 10 years, with last year's the lowest total since 1947.
Total and undesignated church receipts according to the ACP data also declined last year, 0.49 percent and 0.24 percent respectively.
"This new data confirms SBC President Ronnie Floyd's call for next week's convention to focus on prayer for a great awakening. Programs and meetings are not going to revive our people -- only prayer and repentance will lead our people to revival."