LDS Church Growth, Member Activity, and Convert Retention: Review and Analysis

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Chapter: IV-09: Europe

European LDS activity rates appear to have fallen well below the older 35 percent figure cited in the Encyclopedia of Mormonism. Former Belgian bishop Wilfried Decoo reported:
"1996 estimated Church membership in Western Europe [is] ... 347,000 members represent[ing] 0.09 percent of the total population ... about one out of four members is active. Our effective membership in Europe [including the UK is] ... about 87,000 or 0.02 percent."[1]
The 2001 Austrian census reported 2,236 citizens who identify the LDS Church as their faith of preference,[2] compared to 3,917 members listed in the 2003 LDS Church Almanac at year-end 2000 (57 percent). Local members report that actual LDS activity in Austria runs at about 43 percent, one of the highest rates in Europe.

Gary Lobb wrote that activity rates of members in large cities of Western Europe vary from 20 to 30 percent.[3] These data do not appear to include "address unknown" file members, and correlate closely with my research gathered from traveling to twenty nations. In 1999, LDS activity rates were reported by mission offices, local members, and full-time missionaries as 25 percent in the Czech Republic, 28 percent in Hungary, 20 percent in Estonia, and 20 percent in Poland.


FOOTNOTES
[1] Decoo, Wilfried, "Issues in Writing European History and in Building the Church in Europe," Journal of Mormon History, Spring 1997: 164.
[2] 2001 Austrian Census, www.statistik.at/presse2002/religion.pdf.
[3] Lobb, Gary C., "Mormon Membership Trends in Europe among People of Color: Present and Future Assessment," Dialogue, 33/4 (Winter 2000).