At the Houses of Parliament today for the launch of the Benedict XVI Centre for Religion and Society Report on “Contemporary Catholicism in England and Wales”. The event was introduced by Nick Spencer from Theos and the report explained by its author, Centre Director, Stephen Bullivant. Its contents merited full front headline coverage in the Guardian.
Amongst its findings were that:
- 48.5% of the English and Welsh adult population identifies as having no religion
- The Anglican church has suffered the largest fall, 44.5% to 19.0% between 1983 and 2014.
- The churches convert very few people raised with no religion or a non-Christian religion.
These findings merit close examination by Christians of all denominations but especially those from the Church of England. I am excited by seeing shoots of new growth with the success of newly planted Anglican churches such as those at St Peter’s, Brighton. However, there is a lot of work to be done to reverse these shocking national statistics.