SL10336: Panel: Growth and Dispersion of Latter-day Saints in “Zion” and “Babylon”: The Consequences of Mormon Demographic Transition

”Demographic Change in Utah: Consequences for LDS Religious Behavior and Member Retention in the Mormon Culture Region.” This paper looks at demographic data from Utah and various national censuses throughout the world to analyze the trends and consequences of Mormon growth and dispersion. Rick Phillips’ paper combines several data sources to show how recent shifts in Utah’s demography may have important implications for the activity and retention of Latter-day Saints in their Great Basin stronghold. “Comparing the Global Growth and Distributions of Mormons, adventists, and Witnesses, and Testing the Reliability of the Membership Data.” Mormons, Adventists, and Witnesses are all American religious groups whose beginnings date from the nineteenth century; they have all experienced strong growth and become global in scope. Much can be learned from comparing them. This presentation will begin by using the detailed membership data of the three groups to compare their growth and geographic distribution over time. It will then turn to census and other data to test to what extent their official statistics can be relied on and to make new estimates of their total active membership. Along the way, it will also consider the socioeconomic status of their members.