On the opening day of a three-day meeting the Executive Council received a report on the Diocese of Quincy.
Diocese of Quincy Provisional Bishop John Buchanan told the council that the Peoria, Illinois-based diocese is a “small but faithful part of the church.”
In 1994 the diocese consisted of 21 congregations and 3,419 baptized members, and in 2008 just 2,283 belonged to that same number of congregations. In 2007, its diocesan operating income was $352,000 and its budget balanced.
Then, in November 2008, a majority of the diocesan synod voted to leave the Episcopal Church and to realign with the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone, forming the Southern Cone Diocese of Quincy. Since that “schism,” as Buchanan called it, the diocese is reduced to nine congregations, three of which worship in borrowed space. There are fewer than 1,000 baptized members and the average Sunday attendance diocese-wide is less than 375.
The bishop stressed that Quincy, the smallest of the church’s four reorganizing dioceses (the others being Fort Worth, Pittsburgh and San Joaquin), is unique in “seriously considering its sustainability for the short-term and the long-term.” A committee is considering various models for the episcopate, as well as possible merger (formally known as juncture) with a neighboring diocese or reunion with Chicago.