Philadelphia census of congregations and their involvement in social service delivery

Ram A. Cnaan, Stephanie C. Boddie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This census of congregational social services is the first attempt to identify all of the congregations in Philadelphia and their services. This article reports results from 1,376 of an estimated 2,095 congregations. It finds that 1,211 congregations (88 percent) have at least one social program. On average, each congregation provides 2.41 programs and serves 102 people per month. The primary beneficiaries are children (served by 49.2 percent of all programs). According to the census, 571 congregations (41.5 percent) collaborate with secular organizations, and 857 congregations (62.3 percent) are open to collaborating with government welfare programs. Conservatively, the financial replacement value of all congregational social services in Philadelphia is $246,901,440 annually.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)558-579
Number of pages22
JournalSocial Service Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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