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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Study finds more U.S. Orthodox Christian converts


This is an article from the USA Today, written by Nicole Neroulias







The article says:

"A new study of Orthodox Christians in America has found a larger-than-expected number of converts, mostly from Roman Catholic and evangelical Protestant backgrounds.
The report, released by the Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute in Berkeley, Calif., surveyed 1,000 members of Greek Orthodox or Orthodox Church in America congregations, which represent about 60% of America's estimated 1.2 million Orthodox Christians.

Although Orthodox churches were historically immigrant communities, the study found that nine out of 10 parishioners are now American-born. Thousands of members had converted to the faith as adults: 29% of Greek Orthodox are converts, as are 51% of the OCA.

"I would not have expected this many," said Alexei Krindatch, the Orthodox Institute's research director. "My sense was that in Greek Orthodox, it would be around 15%, and OCA maybe one-third."

The study also found unexpectedly high numbers of converts among clergy — 56% in the OCA, 14% in the Greek Orthodox church. In both cases, the higher OCA numbers reflect that group's use of English in its worship services, he added.

These findings could mean that Orthodox churches are growing in America, assuming there aren't equal or greater numbers of Orthodox Christians leaving for other faiths; researchers won't know until they conduct a 2010 membership census. The findings, however, indicate that other Christians are increasingly seeking a more traditional worship experience, Krindatch said.

"In the case of Roman Catholics, those are mainly people who are not quite happy with the reforms of the Second Vatican Council; they are looking for the Catholic Church as it used to be in the past," he said. "In the case of evangelical Christians, those are people who have very strong personal beliefs, they know the Bible very well, they are frequent churchgoers, and eventually they want to join an established church with deep, historical roots."


To read the rest of the article, go to the USA today Website:


They didn't include the jurisdiction I'm in, which is AOA (Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America) if they did the percentage would of been higher. Plus the survey was done on the west coast, the numbers could of been different if they did a national survey. But it's interesting to know what's going on in the west coast.





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1 comments:

Tony-Allen said...

And I'm one of them. Hooray!

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