Thinking Anglicans

Parish income and ministry stats published

The Church of England has today published (5.6 MB pdf file) its latest information both about parish income and expenditure and about trends in ministry numbers in Church Statistics 2010/11.

The press release states that:

The attendance statistics included were published in January 2012. This year’s financial statistics show that parish giving remained resilient in 2010 despite the general economic situation. With investment income still at the reduced level experienced in recent years overall parish income was marginally ahead of the previous year.

The rest of the press release is copied below the fold.

Earlier statistics are available here.

Parish income

Despite the difficult economic times, parishioners’ tax-efficient planned giving continued to increase in 2010, by 3.4% to an average of £10.41 a week. When higher inflation is taken into account this does, however, represent a fall compared with 2009 – the first fall in real terms since 2000.

The total income of parishes rose slightly to £897 million, although this is also a real terms decline compared with 2009. Because so much of this comes from the regular, planned giving which continues to be the core of church finances, this decrease was proportionally less than that experienced by many charities.

In 2010, parishes received £305 million from more than six hundred thousand regular givers. Many of these gifts and some one-off donations are given through Gift Aid, resulting in more than £84 million in tax being reclaimed by parishes from HMRC, up by more than £2 million from 2009.

Income from dividends, interest and property dropped by approximately 11 per cent between 2009 and 2010, and parishes received £30 million from this source. This drop reflects low interest rates and stock market returns.

At the same time, parishes made donations of £49 million to external charities and mission organisations.

Ministry and Ordination candidates

At the end of 2011, there were some 28,955 licensed and authorised ministers, ordained and lay, active across the 12,500 parishes and a growing variety of chaplaincies (in local communities, hospitals, education, prisons and the armed forces) in the Church of England.

The number of people ordained to stipendiary (paid) ministry – 264 in 2011 – has remained broadly stable over the past 16 years (see graph p52). This is compared with almost a three-fold increase in those ordained to self-supporting ministry (89 in 1994 to 240 in 2011). About half (52 per cent) of those ordained in 2011 entered stipendiary ministry compared with more than three quarters (78 per cent) in 1994. In total, 504 new clergy were ordained in 2011. 464 candidates were accepted to train as future clergy in 2011, a lower number than in previous years (but provisional figures for 2012 show that numbers accepted for ordination have returned to previous levels). The number of readers in training in 2011 was 349.

The number of women clergy, paid and unpaid, continues to rise. In 2011 there were 1,763 women in full-time paid parochial appointments compared with 1,140 in 2000, an increase of 50 per cent over the decade. Women make up over one in five (22 per cent) of paid parish clergy. Women in 2011 made up more than half of both those in self-supporting ministry (54 per cent) and of licensed readers (51 per cent).

Clergy information by ethnicity for each diocese is published for the first time, with percentage of white and black minority ethnic stipendiary priests.


The Research & Statistics team are undergoing a process of review and would like your feedback as part of their current “Data Users” survey. This will help them to prioritise what they will publish in the future and hopefully make Church Statistics much more relevant to you.

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David Keen
David Keen
11 years ago

Some analysis of where the CofE might be headed in terms of clergy numbers, and whether that’s sustainable:

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