Skip to comments.Declining membership hurts Episcopal churches in Northern California
Posted on 02/22/2010 7:34:26 AM PST by SmithL
She sings the litany. He delivers the sermon.
It is Sunday morning at All Saints Episcopal Church in Sacramento and both the Revs. Michael and Betsey Monnot preside over the worship services, one of several ways the church keeps down expenses.
"We trade off duties every week," said Betsey Monnot.
The two priests, who are married and have two children and another due in three weeks, said the church could afford one full-time clergyperson. So they agreed to job-share and serve as co-rectors.
"When you're a small church, you have to be creative," said Michael Monnot.
He echoes a message that Bishop Barry Beisner has been delivering to the members of the Episcopal Diocese of Northern California.
Faced with declining membership and less money to pay salaries and maintain aging buildings, Beisner is calling on staff and laity to come up with new ways of keeping their church doors open.
The bishop said he has no plans to close any of the 72 churches in the diocese. "But everything is on the table," he said.
Many congregations can no longer afford full-time clergy. Some are having trouble paying their bills. In a letter to clergy this month, a diocesan leader said changes must be made soon.
"There are those who feel we are on the brink of a crisis," said Canon Britt Olson in the Aurora Clergy E-News. "This is because this is a crisis not only for the congregation, but for all churches in the diocese."
(Excerpt) Read more at sacbee.com ...
Why do churches even have expenses? At my church, our only expenses are the utilities and taxes on the building, an almost negligible amount of money easily covered by the money in the collection box.
Yep! I have friends who went to an episcopal church in OKC because they had a better youth program than the catholic church when they first moved there. They couldn’t stand the fact that the episcopals changed their morals with the direction of the wind. They later found the catholic church they were meant to join.
The expenses are minimal if you don’t pay the priest. We don’t have anybody paid except for a facilities group that maintains several buildings.
Most of the problems the Episcopal Church have been self inflicted. When they chose to become “The Church of What’s Happening Now” , as in the old Flip Wilson sketches, they lost a lot of followers, and they haven’t even done a good job of being hip. Griswold, Schori, and of course Eugene Robinson may have inflicted fatal wounds on the Episcopal Church.
The Episcopal Church has abandoned its religious principles. Why shouldn’t their parishoners seek the word of God elsewhere . . . . . such as a church or religion where the word of God still has relevance??
A husband and wife priest-priestess team??
well, the priest/priestess/pastor/pastoress/Elder/Prophet/Deacon/ etc. needs to be able to afford food and shelter at the very least.
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