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Posted by: justbreathe ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 10:55PM

I just had a thought and wanted to know if there was any information that could back up the number of 14 million members. I heard that the church keeps you on the rolls until you are 110 or something foolish like that. I am currently a non-believing member and just wanted to figure out where that 14 million comes from. Thanks in advance.

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Posted by: AKA Alma ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:04PM

How long has it been "14 million" for?

I've heard estimates of "active membership" are somewhere in the 4-6 million range.

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Posted by: justbreathe ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:07PM

The last number came from general conference in October stating that the church membership was over 14 million. I believe only 30% of the church is active. I could be giving the church more percentage points than actual numbers. When I served a mission in the Houston area, it felt more like 20% or so. It was very low numbers.

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Posted by: goldenrule ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 05:07PM

My ward is only about 20% active and I live in a highly dense LDS area. There's like 500 members on the roles but only about 100 are active. That's just my ward. Seems pretty typical though.

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Posted by: forbiddencokedrinker ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:10PM

I like to think that the church has only fifteen real members, a couple hundred associated members, and a few million drones who are not in on the real situation.

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Posted by: sistermary ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:11PM

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Posted by: Don Bagley ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:35PM

forbiddencoke, good point. Mormonism works very well for fifteen old men. It works pretty much for about 500 families. After that, a bunch of chumps get taken.

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Posted by: freeman ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 06:00PM

It pretty well matches a typical "successful" MLM profile. The guy who sells you the dream really is wealthy. The next couple of levels make a good living. The next couple scrape by, and the rest end up spending more money than they make back.

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Posted by: captainmoroni ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:25PM

The 14 million number is anyone who has ever been baptized and anyone who is born to a member whether they get baptized eventually or not. In my mission, we only knew where maybe 25% of our members were. Most went to other churches or were dead. We never took them off the rolls.

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Posted by: jan ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 02:39PM

captainmoroni Wrote:
> The 14 million number is anyone who has ever been
> baptized and anyone who is born to a member
> whether they get baptized eventually or not.

So are they double counting children, once when they are "blessed" and again when they are dunked?

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Posted by: ronas ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 03:14PM

I believe they are only counted once they are baptized.

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Posted by: GNPE ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:29PM

What the FRICK does it matter?

Don't follow ChurchCo into the Numbers game;

a) they'll win (by withholding the actual numbers/figures/stats)

b) it Doesn't Matter!

Who On Earth would join or associate with a cultish church because of its size???? Wouldn't YOU find out about Quality?

just sayin'

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Posted by: steve benson ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:37PM

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/25/2012 11:37PM by steve benson.

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Posted by: enoughenoch19 ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:38PM

I just want to say that if all of the inactive semi-exmos actually resigned, the exodus numbers would be horrendous. If a lot of folks left right away, it would be noticed by the media. They can hide many things but not everything. If millions resign within a fairly short time span (hopefully soon before the main thrusts of the election coverage gets going), I think it could have an impact on the entire USA.
Guynoir is right that it seems nuts to join a cult b/c it has lots of people as members, but a lot fewer will join if resignations are over the top.
If you are on the fence and inactive and don't care about TSCC anymore, resign please. Let's shake things up a bit.

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Posted by: justbreathe ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:46PM

I'm not "inactive" according to what my ward thinks. I work a hospital job and I am frequently working on Sunday, and therefore I have my excuse as to why I am not there. I have a wife that still believes and my kid likes primary for the social interaction. I am debating whether this will be my final year at my current status. I was a very successful missionary (able to persuade well with those who had even a slight degree of interest), and I was just wondering as to the number because even though I was successful, I could in no way justify the increasing number every year. I tried to follow what my friends, family and others did in their mission and wondered how the numbers would just so quickly. I now know that my children, who were both blessed in church, are now counted in that number at least until they are 9. If and when I leave, it is because of logic and not because of anything else.

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Posted by: justbreathe ( )
Date: January 25, 2012 11:49PM

Whoa, I just saw Steve Benson respond to my thread! Is it the real Steve Benson, of the late President Benson? Heard a lot about ya from the ma and pa.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/25/2012 11:50PM by justbreathe.

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Posted by: steve benson ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 12:04AM

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/26/2012 12:07AM by steve benson.

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Posted by: justbreathe ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 12:31AM

Although he may be dead, you were big news when I was beginning to understand why religion was "important". All my parents told me was you were bitter about something and therefore you left... I read your story and don't see a bitter person, I see a person who wanted to stand up for what was right. Nice to see you are still around. :)

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Posted by: steve benson ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 12:19PM

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/26/2012 12:20PM by steve benson.

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Posted by: ! ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 10:09PM

You can't say something nice without sticking in something insulting, in this case about the poster's parents. And I notice this time and again, not just in this instance.

Hissy fit in 5...4...3...

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Posted by: Raptor Jesus ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 10:13PM

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Posted by: steve benson ( )
Date: January 27, 2012 01:42AM

This is an obvious phenomenon that historically has cut across the boundaries of all religious belief:

"Frantic orthodoxy is never rooted in faith but in doubt. It is when we are unsure that we are doubly sure."

--Reinhold Niebuhr, U.S. Protestant theologian (1892-1971)

You need less of a hissy-fit exclamation point and more of a regularly-used question mark.

Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 01/27/2012 01:47AM by steve benson.

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Posted by: grubbygert ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 12:23AM

"If millions resign within a fairly short time span..."

do you really think they'd actually announce a drop in membership?

'membership' has been increasing at a very steady pace - no matter what happens they're going announce that they have 50k-ish missionaries that did 300k-ish baptisms this year

same as the year before

same as the year before that


edited to add: there are lots of good reasons to resign - i just don't think that resigning to change the imaginary number the church announces each year is one of them...

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/26/2012 12:27AM by grubbygert.

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Posted by: introvertedme ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 09:33AM

+1!! Couldn't agree more - I'd love to see this happen!

(this showed up in the wrong place - I was responding to enoughenoch)

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/26/2012 09:34AM by introvertedme.

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Posted by: grubbygert ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 12:13AM

from chapter 4 of 1984:

"But actually, he thought as he re-adjusted the Ministry of Plenty's figures, it was not even forgery. It was merely the substitution of one piece of nonsense for another. Most of the material that you were dealing with had no connexion with anything in the real world, not even the kind of connexion that is contained in a direct lie. Statistics were just as much a fantasy in their original version as in their rectified version. A great deal of the time you were expected to make them up out of your head. For example, the Ministry of Plenty's forecast had estimated the output of boots for the quarter at one-hundred-and-forty-five million pairs. The actual output was given as sixty-two millions. Winston, however, in rewriting the forecast, marked the figure down to fifty-seven millions, so as to allow for the usual claim that the quota had been overfulfilled. In any case, sixty-two millions was no nearer the truth than fifty-seven millions, or than one-hundred-and-forty-five millions. Very likely no boots had been produced at all. Likelier still, nobody knew how many had been produced, much less cared. All one knew was that every quarter astronomical numbers of boots were produced on paper, while perhaps half the population of Oceania went barefoot. And so it was with every class of recorded fact, great or small. Everything faded away into a shadow-world in which, finally, even the date of the year had become uncertain."

i have a feeling that the above scenario plays itself out every annual conference with respect to TSCC's membership number

does anyone actually know the total number? is it even possible to confirm the 14 million number? probably not

anyone that has seen a ward list knows that the total number of members is completely irrelevent - it could be (and probably is) a complete fiction and things would still continue on...

again: "All one knew was that every quarter astronomical numbers of boots were produced on paper, while perhaps half the population of Oceania went barefoot."

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Posted by: holger danske ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 05:55PM

As I reread 1984 not too long ago, I couldn't believe how many things kept jumping out at me that related to my interaction with the church. I made all sorts of notes and have yet to sit down and copy out what I was thinking.

I may just go find that book right now...

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Posted by: freeman ( )
Date: January 27, 2012 02:09AM

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Posted by: Mateo Pastor ( )
Date: January 27, 2012 11:41AM

But the 20-25% activity rate is an Anglo thing from North America and New Zealand and the like. Anywhere in Europe and most of Latin America, it's single digits, and in some places has collapsed under 1%! A friend of mine served a mission in Brazil and visited a ward with less than 20 active members and more than 2,000 members living nearby. A branch I visited in Portugal had 70 members living in the town, and not one still came to church. And then there was the small town in Spain with one single very active member. Sexually active, that was. She had sex with a mishie.

Or as I heard my own bishop here in Spain mutter to his wife (they were from California, so they said it in English) "so many members, so little tithing". ROTFLMAO!

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Posted by: foundoubt ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 12:33AM

This is just my take, and I haven't attended that many wards, but in those wards and branches I have attended had an attendance ratio of about 20-25%. In a ward of 600 members, there was 75, mayb 100 members in the pews on sunday. If that is true for most wards, and then you can see there is about 3.5 to 4 million active members. The other 75% are still carried on the books, unless they have had their name removed. Even then, I think those of us that have resigned are counted somehow.
Lets be generous and say there is 4 million, then if you take GBH's statement that more than half reside outside the US, You can see there is about 1.5 to 2 million that are hardcore mormons in the US. Not anywhere near to taking over the whole earth that I thought at one time.

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Posted by: justbreathe ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 01:54AM

seems legit.

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Posted by: Quoth the Raven "Nevermo" ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 12:38AM

There have been several posts about this, with references, and I think the consensus was 5 million.

Mainstream christians count active members. TSSC counts anyone who was baptised up to when they are it 102?

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Posted by: oddcouplet ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 11:25AM

How will the deception end?

Twice each year the church announces increases in membership. This almost certainly increases the difference between the purported membership and the actual membership (i.e., active or at least self-identified). At some point the difference will become so extreme that the purported number will no longer be defensible. People will begin to point out that it is obviously untrue, and ask the church for its response to this fact.

If you were the Prophet, what would you do to either prevent or react to this situation? Claim continuing growth in the third world, where the data cannot be easily checked? Try to mask the situation by adjusting the numbers according to a new method of counting? Cut back the missionary program so that the decline appears to be the result of the church's decisions rather than the decisions of individual members? Just keep on announcing bigger numbers, and accuse critics of anti-Mormon lies? Announce that even the elect are being deceived, and that the apocalypse is nigh? Some combination of the above?

I'm curious about your thoughts on this.

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Posted by: grubbygert ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 02:46PM

i'm very curious about this, too

i tend to think that as long as there is a small army of missionaries in far away places TSCC can keep announcing growth at the same pace

if the disconnect between the numbers and the actual participants starts to become obvious (isn't it already???) to members in north america TSCC has an out: the growth is happening on other continents...

there are lots of people (not just us - even some members) that won't buy it but that won't matter - most mormons just want answers from their leaders - they don't care if those answers make sense

so i'm betting on it continuing as is

which is why i posted the except from 1984 - i really think that paragraph will someday come true (has it already? is there some winston smith in the cob that knows...)

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Posted by: baura ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 11:27AM

I once attended the annual meeting of a Presbyterian congregation. In addition to a financial statment, which they handed out to everyone who came in the door, was a listing of the number of people dropped from membership rolls for not having attended for a year.

What would the membership of the Mormon Church be if they dropped everyone who didn't attend for a year?

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Posted by: Thomas $. Monson ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 02:19PM

In Italy (where I am now) TSCC claims to have 25K members or so. However, most chapels are almost deserted, baptisms are rare events, and half of the (very few) active members can hardly speak Italian.

LOL, a new temple here, what a joke.

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Posted by: helamonster ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 02:25PM

After all, the FOUNDATION of the church is made-up stuff. Why wouldn't they also completely fabricate membership numbers?

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Posted by: CA girl ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 04:57PM

Don't forget - it doesn't matter that you say you are a member or not...It's whether THEY say you are a member or not.

Arrogant jerks.

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Posted by: Stray Mutt ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 02:46PM

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Posted by: NormaRae ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 02:47PM

There are 14 million+ members. Including all of us. WTF you say? "I'm not a member, I resigned my membership." Yes, but we've had enough of an inside glimpse here over the years to know for a fact that we're still counted in the numbers. They move your name to an "unaffiliated members" list, but they can't purge it because what if, gawdforbid, you decide to get back in when you realize that the mor(m)on church really is true and that if you're not a member you'll party in hell for all eternity? They can't let all of us get re-baptized without the power play, so they have to keep info on us to check the database before someone dunks us unknowingly. And, oh, they just haven't been able to find a programmer yet who knows how to fix the system so the unaffiliated people are no longer counted. Well, or the people who haven't been to church in decades who they can't find and wouldn't be 110 yet, or the ones who flat out told them to go F*** themselves or the ones who were so drunk when the mishies dunked them after 1 lesson that they don't even remember being a member or never knew that little refreshing dip in the small pool made them a member.

But to answer your question, yes that number is probably correct. It does NOT make them one of the fastest growing churches in the country, however, it only makes them the laughing stock of the vast inter-faith church record keepers across the universe.

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Posted by: enoughenoch19 ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 03:11PM

If you were the Prophet, what would you do to either prevent or react to this situation?
God should just reveal the answer to this asap.
Oh! Nevermind, they don't have revelations anymore.
I asked one of my TBM relatives which room in the Morg tower is used for revelations. She said they haven't had any revelations for a long time.....OK. So, why do they call the old fart seer and revelator?

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Posted by: RPackham ( )
Date: January 26, 2012 04:33PM

Actually there are more people who have left the church or become completely inactive than there are active members.

See my analysis at "FAQ: How many exmormons are there?"

See also, on the supposed growth of the church:

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Posted by: Ex-CultMember ( )
Date: January 27, 2012 01:23PM

Richard, do you know if these resignation numbers have continued at this rate, since 2000?

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Posted by: Lucky ( )
Date: January 27, 2012 02:03AM

apparently MORmON math includes a provision of 300% leeway on any figure and can still be considered accurate!

for the rest of us 1 still doesnt equal 4

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Posted by: Timothy ( )
Date: January 27, 2012 11:29AM

Its also the fastest growing religion in the world today!

Now that we've settled that, I've got some cheap beach-front property in Kansas you might be interested in.


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