Well, I’ve misplaced/lost all my UUA certification stats from 2005. (Does anyone have a list — including UU congregation ID numbers — for 2005?) But I do have 2004 and earlier. So this is what I have to date.
For those churches certified as of this morning, including the foreign ones and the Church of the Larger Fellowship, the membership has grown from 53,570 to 56,654, a net increase of 3,084.
But this number should be read through a few lenses.
- 136 of those members are in three new and one reactivated churches.
- the CLF lost 231 members in the two years. This does matter to me since the CLF would be a special case of how it attracts and loses members.
- The Unitarian Universalist Church of the Philippines grew by 1,598 members, which suggests a change in the way members are counted. It, too, is a special case, and ought to be regarded as its own denomination (which it is) statistically.
This leaves a “useful” net increase of 1581 in the current sample of previously existing churches over the last two years. Even tripled (assuming that carried through the two-thirds of churches that haven’t certified yet) and you get a modest increase — but not good enough to deflect Michael Duvall’s criticism. (Article in the UU Voice) But y’all’ve heard me sing that tune before so I’ll refrain from saying more.