Karlsruhe/Stuttgart (dpa/lsw) - The decline in membership in the evangelical churches in the southwest continues. According to a spokeswoman, the regional church of Württemberg lost more than 63,500 members, including the deaths. Of these, around 32,000 were purely due to departures (previous year: around 25,500). The Baden State Church recorded a decline of more than 27,000 members. Over 22,000 of them left the church - also significantly more than in the previous year (around 16,900). This means that the state church in Württemberg still has 1,821,625 members and that in Baden has 1,035,524 (as of December 31, 2022).
In contrast, there were about 3,060 admissions into the two churches and 27,500 baptisms - slightly more than in the previous year. "The question of God and membership in the church no longer seems important to many," said Württemberg's state bishop Ernst-Wilhelm Gohl. "But everyone who has left is also an opportunity to win him or her over again and bring them back."
According to its own statements, the Landeskirche Baden is reacting to the declining number of members and the changes in society with the future process "ekiba2032". We want to invite people inside and outside the church to think about the role of God and the churches. Bishop Heike Springhart described theology as the "elixir of life" of the church. They encourage free thinking. "Nothing has to stay the way it is, and that opens up a new horizon for me."