Membership of the 142 churches (plus 10 recognized congregations and two recognized councils) belonging to the Lutheran World Federation stands at 72.3 million as of February 2014.
Since the statistics were last released in 2011, LWF membership increased by 3 percent (600,000 people) in Africa and 19 percent (1.7 million) in Asia, respectively.
Membership continued to decline in North America (down 7.8 percent), Latin America and the Caribbean (down 0.3 percent) and Europe (down 1.6 percent).
Among the 79 countries represented, Germany has the most Lutherans in the LWF (12.2 million).
According to the LWF, the top dozen churches in terms of membership are:
1. The Church of Sweden, 6.5 million.
2. Ethiopian Evangelical [Lutheran] Church Mekane Yesus, 6.3 million.
3. Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania, 5.8 million.
4. Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark, 4.4 million.
5. Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland, 4.15 million.
6. Protestant Christian Batak Church (Indonesia), 4.1 million.
7. ELCA, 3.95 million.
8. (Lutheran) Church of Norway, 3.8 million.
9. Malagasy Lutheran Church (Madagascar), 3 million.
10. Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hanover (Germany), 2.8 million.
11. Evangelical Lutheran Church in Bavaria (Germany), 2.51 million.
12. Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church (India), 2.5 million.
© 2014 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers