Official statistics released by the Church of England show that 2,736 volunteers are supporting communities across the Diocese of Winchester. Activities supported include parent and toddler groups, youth clubs and school-based clubs. This figure represents nearly 1,000 more volunteers than the national average .
Commenting on the figures, the Right Reverend Tim Dakin, Bishop of Winchester, said:
“I am grateful that people in our parishes across Hampshire and East Dorset are so generous with their time, making a significant contribution to young people in their local communities. In our Diocese, we try to put outreach and care for others at the heart of everything we do, so it is particularly welcome to see that so many volunteers are making this commitment to their local area.”
The Reverend Canon Dr Paul Moore, Archdeacon for Mission Development, added:
“A key part of our work here in the Diocese involves encouraging the growth of Christian communities and exploring fresh ways of being Church that reach out to engage with people who wouldn’t normally think of coming to church. Outreach to support children and young people within our communities is a really important part of this so I welcome these figures, which show active engagement across our Diocese.”
The report also shows that engagement in more traditional ways with the Church remains stable. In 2013, 3,640 people were baptised and 1,820 weddings took place in churches in the Diocese of Winchester. In addition, 53% of churches across Hampshire and East Dorset reported that new members had joined their worshipping communities.
For further information please contact the Diocese of Winchester communications team on 020 7618 9197 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The full report Statistics for Mission 2013 may be downloaded here.