Religious Trends

Religion and Europe's Young Adults

5 key findings from a report to Catholic Bishops into the faith of young adults in Europe:

  1. The proportion of young adults (16-29) with no religious affiliation (‘nones’) is as high as 91% in the Czech Republic, 80% in Estonia, and 75% in Sweden. These compare to only 1% in Israel, 17% in Poland, and 25% in Lithuania. In the UK and France, the proportions are 70% and 64% respectively.
  2. 70% of Czech young adults – and c. 60% of Spanish, Dutch, British, and Belgian ones – ‘never’ attend religious services. Meanwhile, 80% of Czech young adults and c. 70% of Swedish, Danish, Estonian, Dutch, French and Norwegian ones ‘never’ pray.
  3. Catholics make up 82% of Polish, 71% of Lithuanian, 55% of Slovenian, and 54% of Irish 16-29 year-olds. In France, it is 23%; in the UK, 10%.
  4. Only 2% of Catholic young adults in Belgium, 3% in Hungary and Austria, 5% in Lithuania, and 6% in Germany say they attend Mass weekly. This contrasts sharply with their peers in Poland (47%), Portugal (27%), the Czech Republic (24%), and Ireland (24%). Weekly Mass attendance is 7% among French, and 17% among British, Catholic young adults.
  5. Only 26% of French young adults, and 21% British ones, identify as Christians. Only 7% of young adults in the UK identify as Anglicans, compared to 6% as Muslims. In France, 2% identify as Protestants, and 10% as Muslims.

download the report

Christians in Europe — more dying than being born


According to Pew Research Christians remained the largest religious group in the world in 2015, making up nearly a third (31%) of Earth’s 7.3 billion people. But the number of Christians in Europe, is in decline.

But among Christians in Europe deaths outnumbered births by nearly 6 million from 2010 to 2015. In Germany alone, there were an estimated 1.4 million more Christian deaths than births.

Demographics is destiny. Unless you start winning Europeans who are far from God.

Believers in Christ from a Muslim Background: A Global Census


A scholarly investigation and article that estimates the number of Muslim background believers who are followers of Jesus.

According to the abstract:

Since the 1960s, there has been a substantial increase in the number of known conversions from Islam to Christianity. Most of these conversions have been to forms of evangelical or Pentecostal Christianity, but there have also been conversions to Catholic and Orthodox Christianity, and still other converts claim to remain in some way both Muslims and followers of Jesus. This article explains how we obtained estimates of the number of converts, the complexities involved in this task, and an annotated list of countries by continent with the estimated number of believers in Christ from a Muslim background. The article includes charts with maximal, minimal, and medium estimates of this population from 1960 to the present.

The future of the Anglican church is black


What does the future of the Anglican church look like?

According to this report it's black. Very black.

While the English Anglicans have been closing churches at a frightening rate, the Nigerians have been planting them.

At a recent meeting let by Archbishop Peter Akinola, they created 18 new dioceses and elected 20 new bishops to serve in them. All the money for this expansion is already in the bank. Members of the Church of Nigeria and their friends have given it all because they have a passion to share the Gospel.

The 17 missionary dioceses they created last year have already planted more than 300 congregations and nobody seems surprised.

At the same meeting the Archbishop announced the Province had enough funds to cover it's running costs and asked the dioceses not to send in any more money. Instead they should use the funds to plant more churches and create more dioceses!

Naturally, none of this news has made the headlines of the Western press. None of this will impress the church leaders, academics, bloggers and commentators in the developed world who are embarrassed the Archbishop's unswerving commitment to a biblical faith.

Unfortunately for them, this is the form of Christianity championed by the world's poor.

That's why the future of the Anglican church is black.

American church decline or not?

Istock 000002845745Xsmall We all know that Christianity is in decline in the West evidenced by plummeting church attendances.

Or is it?

It certainly is true in Britain, Continental Europe and Australia It is not true in the United States.

A study by Stanley Presser of the University of Maryland and Mark Chaves of Duke University has found that that religious attendance did decline slightly between 1950 and 1990. Especially among the Mainline Protestants and post-Vatican II Catholics.

But evidence from several sources converges on the same answer: weekly attendance at religious services has been stable since 1990 at about 25%.

Why is the US an exception? Or should we be asking, Why is Europe the exception?

HT: Christianity Today