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Transforming the communities of Essex & East London through Christ’s presence

The Church of England – Top ten facts

  • The Church of England performs about 1,000 marriages a week.
  • It conducts about  2,700 baptisms (or christenings) a week.
  • More than 1 million people a week attend a Church of England service - about the same number as 10 years ago.
  • About 2.5 million people attend church services at Christmas.
  • About 1.4 people attend church services at Easter.
  • 25% of all primary schools and 1 in 16 secondary schools are Church of England, many in deprived areas.
  • Church of England schools educate almost 1 million students.
  • Churchgoers contribute 23.2 million hours each month outside their local church to voluntary work in their local community.
  • Congregations give £49 million a year to other charities.
  • The Church provides activities outside church worship in the local community for 470,000 children and young people (aged under 16 years).

The Diocese of Chelmsford

The Diocese of Chelmsford is The Church of England in Essex and East London.

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More facts and figures about the Church of England

The Church of England plays a vital role in the life of the nation, proclaiming the good news of Christ in words and actions, providing services of Christian worship and praise, and being available and active in every community.

Its network of parishes covers the country, bringing a vital Christian dimension to the nation as well as strengthening community life in numerous urban, suburban and rural settings. Its cathedrals are centres of spirituality and service, and its network of chaplaincies across England and continental Europe meet important local needs.

Some 1.05 million people attended Church of England church services each week in 2012. There has been no significant change over the past decade. However, about 38,000 people who had not previously attended church were welcomed into a worshipping community in 2013 compared to about 19,000 who died or left through illness or other reasons.

The Church of England conducted more than 356,000 services of baptism (or christening), weddings and funerals in 2012 (an average of about 6,700 a week).

About 2.5 million people attend a Christmas Eve or Christmas Day service and about 1.4 million people attend an Easter service.

85% of people in Britain visit a church in any one year for many reasons apart from services of worship.  Weddings, funerals, memorial services, school services, concerts and special events attract people to Church of England churches at the centre of community life.

The Church of England regularly provides the centrepiece of important moments in the nation’s life, from celebrating Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee, Royal weddings, coronations and funerals to helping the nation pay its respects to those who have given their lives in the armed forces.

The Church of England is also at the heart of communities as a sacred space during, for example, the Soham murder inquiries and funerals, such as those of the Manchester policewomen or Jade Goody in Chelmsford Diocese, as well as remembrance services.

 4,700 Church of England schools educate almost 1 million children. 25% of all primary schools and 1 in 16 secondary schools are Church of England, many in deprived areas.

More people do unpaid work for churches than for any other organisation.  Churchgoers contribute 23.2 million hours each month outside their local church to the local community.

The Church of England provides activities outside church worship in the local community for 470,000 children and youngsters (aged under 16 years) and 32,900 young people (aged 16 to 25 years). More than 116,000 volunteers and an additional 4900 employed adults run children/young people activity groups sponsored by the Church of England outside church worship.

Church of England congregations give £49 million a year to other charities - that's more than the BBC's annual Children in Need appeal (£31.1 million in 2013).

The Church of England maintains more than 16,000 church buildings across England, 9,000 of which are rural and 7,000 in urban areas; including 42 cathedrals.  Two-thirds of them are listed buildings, including 45% of all Grade 1 listed buildings in England.

It costs more than £110 million a year, most of which is raised by the hard work of clergy, churchwardens and parishioners, to maintain this jewel of England’s architectural heritage. Three church and cathedral locations are World Heritage Sites: Durham Castle and Cathedral; Canterbury Cathedral, St Augustine's Abbey & St Martin's Church; and Westminster Abbey and St Margaret’s Church.

The Church of England plays an active role in national life with its members involved in a wide range of public bodies. Twenty-six bishops are members of the House of Lords and are engaged in debates about legislation and national and international affairs.

The Church of England is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

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