Christianity declining 50% faster than thought in Britain

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Christianity could be facing a catastrophic collapse in Britain according to official figures suggesting it is declining 50 per cent faster than previously thought.


A new analysis of the 2011 census shows that a decade of mass immigration helped mask the scale of decline in Christian affiliation among the British-born population – while driving a dramatic increase in Islam, particularly among the young.

It suggests that only a minority of people will describe themselves as Christians within the next decade, for first time.

Meanwhile almost one in 10 under 25s in Britain is now a Muslim.

The proportion of young people who describe themselves as even nominal Christians has dropped below half for the first time.

Initial results from the 2011 census published last year showed that the total number of people in England and Wales who described themselves as Christian fell by 4.1 million – a decline of 10 per cent.

But new analysis from the Office for National Statistics shows that that figure was bolstered by 1.2 million foreign-born Christians, including Polish Catholics and evangelicals from countries such as Nigeria.

They disclosed that there were in fact 5.3 million fewer British-born people describing themselves as Christians, a decline of 15 per cent in just a decade.

At the same time the number of Muslims in England and Wales surged by 75 per cent – boosted by almost 600,000 more foreign born followers of the Islamic faith.

Written By: John Bingham
continue to source article at telegraph.co.uk

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  1. This is undoubtedly Great News – but I do wish someone would tell the BBC this (especially those in charge of the BBC ‘News’ website)…

    Any fears, if there are any, about the growth of Islam should be tempered by the fact that a large proportion of these ‘Muslims’ are very young children. Hopefully, many of them will grow out of their assumed and imposed faith in due course…

    • In reply to #1 by Dr Bob:

      Any fears, if there are any, about the growth of Islam should be tempered by the fact that a large proportion of these ‘Muslims’ are very young children. Hopefully, many of them will grow out of their assumed and imposed faith in due course.

      Ain’t gonna happen. The UK is doomed. click HERE

      • In reply to #2 by IDLERACER:

        In reply to #1 by Dr Bob:

        Any fears, if there are any, about the growth of Islam should be tempered by the fact that a large proportion of these ‘Muslims’ are very young children. Hopefully, many of them will grow out of their assumed and imposed faith in due course.

        Ain’t gonna happen. The UK is…

        I did say ‘hopefully’…

        I must be in a more positive mood due to it almost being the weekend…

        :-)

    • In reply to #1 by Dr Bob:

      grow out of it in due course

      That would be nice. I would like to see some stats on how frequently people escape Christianity vs Islam. I think you will find Islam is much harder to get away from. It has special punishments for apostates (similar to JWs). Strange as it sounds, Islam is not as obviously crackpot as Christianity. Christianity is much sillier. The Qur’an does not tell stories about a psychotic god. Instead it lays out rules for life in the middle ages in a fairly reasonable social scheme. It also tells you how wonderful god is and how lovely it is to live in his universe (all rather upbeat), But most of the Qur’an is dedicated to threats of truly terrible things that will happen to you after you die if you reject the message. There is very little handle to reject other than “There is no evidence for life after death”. The Muslim is likely to say “OK, but I can’t take the chance.” Except for the horse flying to heaven that sounds like an acid trip or strange dream, Mohammed did not do miracles. He just channeled Allah.

      When Islam was created it was relatively feminist, compared with the thought at the time. However it is frozen in amber, and in addition all kinds of paternalistic ideas have been grafted onto it, (like the hijab that did not exist in Mohammed’s time). Women have far more reason than men to reject Islam, especially the flavour exported by Saudi Arabia (Indonesian Islam is much more relaxed). This will be its undoing. Women are the ones who indoctrinate the next generation. If they subvert that, Islam will wither. Teen rebellion will help too. Islamic teens will utterly refuse to live under more restriction than their peers. The presence of free peers in England is a powerful liberating force.

      • In reply to #5 by Roedy:

        In reply to #1 by Dr Bob:

        grow out of it in due course

        That would be nice. I would like to see some stats on how frequently people escape Christianity vs Islam. I think you will find Islam is much harder to get away from. It has special punishments for apostates (similar to JWs). Strange as it sou…

        Completely agree with everything you have written – especially the last part that mentions the influence of their mothers and their Western peers… Hence my optimism…

      • In reply to #5 by Roedy:

        When Islam was created it was relatively feminist, compared with the thought at the time.

        This line is standard Islamic propaganda that is trotted out as their answer to why they treat their women like reproductive and domestic slaves. I don’t believe it. Consider the idea that women were much better off before Islam was imposed on them in the course of Mo’s murderous rampage through the tribal lands of Arabia.

        May I refer you to the book Why I Am Not a Muslim by Ibn Warraq, chapter 14, page 292.

        “According to the scholar Schacht, women under Islam were in many ways worse off: ‘The Quran in a particular situation had encouraged polygamy and this from being an exception, now became one of the essential features of Islamic law of marriage. It led to a definite deterioration in the position of married women in society, compared with that which they had enjoyed in Pre-Islamic Arabia and this was only emphasized by the fact that many perfectly respectable sexual relationships of Pre-Islamic Arabia had been outlawed by Islam’ *

        • Shacht, Joseph, The Origins of Muhammadan Jurisprudence. Oxford, 1950 page 545

        and

        “Bedouin women working alongside their husbands enjoyed considerable personal freedom and independence. Leading a nonsedentary life, tending cattle, she was neither cloistered nor veiled, but active; her contributions to the community much appreciated and respected. Segregation was totally impractical. If ill-treated by their husbands many simply ran away to a neighboring tribe.”

        Hind, a Bedouin female military leader wasn’t happy about the implications of Mo’s successful tribal raiding for the females under her command. From the same book, page 292-293:

        “When Muhammad arrived at Mecca in A.D. 630 with 10,000 men, a rather overawed Abu Sufyan finally led out a deputation to make a formal submission and swear allegiance. The women led by Hind gave theirs only very reluctantly. Hind reproached Muhammad for having imposed obligations on women that he had not imposed on men. When the Prophet enjoined them never to kill their children, Hind retorted that this was rather fine coming from a military leader who had spilled so much blood at the battle of Badr when seventy men had been killed and many prisoners later executed on Muhammad’s own orders.”

        Everything I’ve included here from Ibn Warraq’s book is consistent with what is written in any basic level Anthropology text that I’ve ever seen regarding the daily life of women in both Hunter-Gatherer groups and Tribal
        societies as well. Women who are covered with layers of clothing that hide their form and face and hidden away from outsiders in tents or structures can’t possibly contribute any useful labor to the family unit. Try making bread and other food wearing a nicab. Try running around tending to several children wearing one of those. It’s completely impractical.

        We need to be aware of this historical reality and not give one bit of credit to the idea that Islam improved the situation of women. Islam has a “women problem” and this is currently their “Achilles heel” Let’s drive the point home!

    • In reply to #1 by Dr Bob:

      This is undoubtedly Great News – but I do wish someone would tell the BBC this (especially those in charge of the BBC ‘News’ website)…

      Any fears, if there are any, about the growth of Islam should be tempered by the fact that a large proportion of these ‘Muslims’ are very young children. Hopefull…

      ” Islamic teens will utterly refuse to live under more restriction than their peers”

      Unlikely if they really believe; the spread of sharia will result in death for apostates, quite a disincentive.
      Positive discrimination ought to be the default- ban koran, mosques, Islamist websites. Ain’t gonna happen, though.

      BBC is a complete disgrace- watch Al Jazeera and see reports of bombings EVERY DAY, of which the BBC seems to be blissfully ignorant…

    • Unfortunately very few if any muslim childre are allowed to ´grow out of´or discard their religious views by a strong pressure from inside their own family and community.In reply to #1 by Dr Bob:

      This is undoubtedly Great News – but I do wish someone would tell the BBC this (especially those in charge of the BBC ‘News’ website)…

      Any fears, if there are any, about the growth of Islam should be tempered by the fact that a large proportion of these ‘Muslims’ are very young children. Hopefull…

    • In reply to #4 by Roedy:

      What this suggests is most people take their religious attitudes from peers. A religion is like a fad with a longer lifespan.

      Absolutely, I’m not sure if I posted this here recently (or if I just intended on doing so), but I recently heard about a study which involved getting people to be more conscientious about the environment and recycling, etc. Before the study, people self reported that “seeing what their neighbors were doing” was least important. They ranked higher all sorts of other reasons and motivators that would help lead them to take action. Lots of noble intention, but in the end, the researchers found that neighborhood peer pressure was the biggest motivator. Being told or shown what other neighbors were doing caused the neighbor to take action. No one wants to be out of the loop or “shown up.” If you’ve ever gotten some sort of ad on your front door handle claiming your neighbors named ______ are recently are using their services, it’s because they understand how motivating peer pressure actually is.

      Maybe there should be a billboard “Your neighbor thinks – The Bible doesn’t make sense.”

  2. “These figures once again confirm that this remains a faithful nation and that the fall in the numbers identifying themselves as Christians is a challenge but – as you can see from the stability of Church of England attendance figures – the committed worshipping centre of the church remains firm.”

    Were they quoting the same stats the article was?

  3. There is no way Islam will ever dominate Britain. It cannot survive the oxygen of a democratic system. People are free to practice it as a religion, but not as a system of government (or law). Quite simply the majority will never vote for that – and that may well include a majority of people who are nominally Muslim. One of the reasons they are in Britain rather than anywhere else is that they found anywhere else not entirely to their taste…

    I don’t doubt we will have episodes involving hotheads and “men of violence” on both sides for decades to come, with tragic consequences for some casualties, but we’ve had more than 2,000 years of assimilating other cultures and adding them to the mix that amounts to whatever “British” currently means, and this little episode is, in the larger scheme of things, water off a duck’s back.

    As to the fall in Christianity, this is welcome news. But can I also remind peole that prior to the 2011 Census the British Humanist Association led a vigorous campaign against the religion question (the only optional question in the census) arguing it was a leading question bound to tilt the results in favour of people claiming to belong to one religion or another. The National Statistics Office finally agreed with the BHA’s argument, but refused to change the question (!) saying they needed consistency with the 2001 question.

    Consequently, a lot of “cultural Christians” who probably believe in nothing much and never go to church will also have ticked the box. Only 1.4% of people in England (1.2% of under-16s) attend a weekly Church of England service. Possibly 4% of us attend any Christian church weekly. The position is far better than the Daily Telegraph report actually indicates.

    • In reply to #9 by Stevehill:

      Hi Steve,

      People are free to practice [Islam] as a religion, but not as a system of government (or law).

      Not true.

      I don’t doubt we will have episodes involving hotheads and “men of violence” on both sides for decades to come, with tragic consequences for some casualties, but we’ve had more than 2,000 years of assimilating other cultures and adding them to the mix that amounts to whatever “British” currently means, and this little episode is, in the larger scheme of things, water off a duck’s back.

      That sounds dangerously negligent to me – even if true, and I see a very different picture. Action to ensure that immigration is at least bounded by some limits – and to ensure that the special favouring of religions of all kinds seems the appropriate response to me.

      Even by your own admission, conflict is inevitable if we continue to allow the growth of Islam in Britain. Prevention is better than cure.

      The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.

      Peace.

      • In reply to #17 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

        In reply to #9 by Stevehill:

        Hi Steve,

        People are free to practice [Islam] as a religion, but not as a system of government (or law).

        Not true.

        I don’t doubt we will have episodes involving hotheads and “men of violence” on both sides for decades to come, with tragic consequences for some casual…

        I’ve spent much of my life lawyering. The UK civil (but not criminal) judicial system encourages mediation and arbitration as an alternative to full-on and expensive litigation in courts. Sharia “courts”, like Jewish Beth Din courts, are considered to be in most cases a suitable means of alternative dispute resolution.

        Sometimes they exceed their remit. For this reason alone I am an active supporter of Maryam Namazie’s “One Law For All” campaign. But it would be grossly wrong to say all sharia courts’decision are bad.

        Muslims, at 2.8 million, are currently 4.4% of Britons. Most are themselves born and bred British. They vote Tory or Labour or LibDem or Green (but probably not UKIP) like the rest of us. Not for the (non-existent) “Caliphate Party”. And will continue to do so. It will take generations for them to be in a position to dictate public policy in Britain even if they all wanted to destroy the system we now have. (And as a side issue, if that happens, I’m not sure we have a right to argue against a democratic vote).

        Meanwhile, we have twice as many Catholics as we do Muslims and strangely enough the Pope does not dictate to Parliament on abortion, contraception, stem cells, gay adoption, gay marriage and more besides. Not least because once you get them into the polling booth Catholics vote against the Pope.

        I’ve worked with lots of Muslims. They like, by and large, the Britain they are part of. Lots of room for political debate, but they do not want a revolution. I’m not complacent, I’m realistic.

  4. I do suspect that this the healthy UK decline is being hurried along by many of our wonderfully intelligent comedians. There is a tremendously positive and high profile process on TV and radio here where nonsense of all sorts but very often religious nonsense is called for what it is by clearly well educated and entertaining individuals.

    Unlike the rather dour and bitter satire of yore, this is often upbeat, very pro science and pro reason. I think it is a hugely empowering development. Nerds are cool, fun and sexy.

    • In reply to #11 by phil rimmer:

      I do suspect that this the healthy UK decline is being hurried along by many of our wonderfully intelligent comedians. There is a tremendously positive and high profile process on TV and radio here where nonsense of all sorts but very often religious nonsense is called for what it is by clearly well…

      How very true Phil! I sort of get the impression that pretty much all of the current comedians, except Frank Skinner, are overwealmingly overtly athiest, or at the very least don’t mind taking the piss out of religion.
      I think you are also right that this is starting to seep into the public conciousness, such as it is, but it is all to the good.

      • In reply to #22 by Big Gus:

        In reply to #11 by phil rimmer:

        Ian Hislop, Milton Jones, Miranda Hart and a few others are Christian also. Marcus Brigstocke is atheist but anti fuss, somewhat Alain de Bottonish, but only Skinner has deeply embarrassed himself with actual Christian apologia….and it seems never since

    • In reply to #13 by N_Ellis:

      Once atheists are in the majority we need to get the religious exemption from business taxes removed, as soon as that happens organised religion will disappear almost over night

      Surely due to our horrific debt crisis, we need to do this anyway. These cuts are painful, but we’re all in it together after all!

  5. Ok that’s xians sorted. Now we have to deal with the dangerous threat of islam. Islam practices the quiverful philosophy quietly and stealthily. We have to stop islamic indoctrination of children in schools. The government has to act now to reform education by breaking the theocratic grip on education. Stop the poisoning of young minds and religion in its most dangerousand nasty form will wither and die.

  6. Well it´s a start …..all we go to do now is stop all the muslims describing themselves as muslims …all the buddhists describing themselves as buddhists …all the whateverelses desecribing themselves as whatever and we´ve cracked it ! No religion ….no tool for clever mind bending people to brainwash the normal population with any more .

  7. We have got battalions of quiverfilling muslims in the uk right now and the ruthless divisive hateful doctrine that the the children are exposed to gaurantees that the trouble around the world caused by muslim intolerance will soon have engulfed us. What a fucking awful prospect for us normal hardworking citizens who just want to get on with our lives. Islam is going to turn the uk into Shitistan just like all the other muslim hell hole hate ridden sexually repressive retarded primitive countries of Asia and Africa. The uk better wake up right now and exterminate islam in this country.

  8. @OP Christianity declining 50% faster than thought in Britain

    Thought has been declining in those converted to Xtianity for centuries!
    If Xtianity is now declining faster, it must really be plummeting!

  9. Why has there been such a massive influx of Muslims into Europe, I was pretty amazed when a high school teacher in Norway told me about the number of Muslim immigrants there. Is it the result of economic relocation, flight from violence? I’ve gotten the impression that a lot of the radicalism is coming from culture clash and agitation and inflammation by imported islamist imams.

    • In reply to #31 by whiteraven:

      Why has there been such a massive influx of Muslims into Europe,

      In the UK and France, it is a hangover from colonial empires, where citizenships were granted, and trade continued after independence.

      I was pretty amazed when a high school teacher in Norway told me about the number of Muslim immigrants there. Is it the result of economic relocation, flight from violence?

      I don’t know about Norway.

    • In reply to #33 by phil rimmer:

      In reply to #26 by rjohn19:

      For us colonists, how about a listing of the British atheist comedians I might track down on youtube? I’d love to hear them. Better still would be a few links.

      Fry and Laurie

      Dara O’Briain, Frankie Boyle and on maths

      Mitchel and Webb

      Ricky Gervaise

      Tim Minchin (He…

      I think pretty much any guest appearing on Stephen Fry’s program “QI” would have to be an atheist. I don’t think they could take the constant ribbing if they were a declared Christian or the like.

      Since when has the UK appropriated Tim Minchin? I thought we could still claim ownership! We’re seeing him perform in Australia in June, and I didn’t think he had become an import!

      • In reply to #39 by Nitya:

        I think pretty much any guest appearing on Stephen Fry’s program “QI” would have to be an atheist. I don’t think they could take the constant ribbing if they were a declared Christian or the like.

        The hugely talented Ronnie Ancona once ventured a rather woo-ish/superstitious comment and was immediately pounced on by Fry.

        In 2008 the Scotsman said Tim Minchin “settled in North London”. Later reports said that he “lives in North London” and now his website describes him as being merely “based in London”. This isn’t looking good for us…

        • In reply to #40 by phil rimmer:

          In reply to #39 by Nitya:

          I think pretty much any guest appearing on Stephen Fry’s program “QI” would have to be an atheist. I don’t think they could take the constant ribbing if they were a declared Christian or the like.

          The hugely talented Ronnie Ancona once ventured a rather woo-ish/superstitious comment and was immediately pounced on by Fry.

          Here is a clip of Stephen reacting to an assertion made by Josie Lawrence concerning patron saints.


          The Rev. Richard Coles was a guest on the programme last year. I suppose he could be one of those atheist vicars you sometimes hear about. Frank Skinner and Hugh Dennis have appeared. Jack Dee trained to be a priest and thinks ghosts are real. Rich Hall is a Christian. Sarah Millican believes in palm reading and all sorts of other woo.

          • In reply to #43 by Katy Cordeth:

            In reply to #40 by phil rimmer:

            In reply to #39 by Nitya:

            I think pretty much any guest appearing on Stephen Fry’s program “QI” would have to be an atheist. I don’t think they could take the constant ribbing if they were a declared Christian or the like.

            The hugely talented Ronnie Ancona once ven…

            That is why I couldn’t find the Ronnie Ancona incident. It was Josie Lawrence! Bloody memory. Sorry Ronnie. Thank you. Katy.

  10. In reply to #26 by rjohn19:

    For us colonists, how about a listing of the British atheist comedians I might track down on youtube? I’d love to hear them. Better still would be a few links.

    Mark Steel is a favourite of mine. Almost his entire back catalogue of material is available to download free from his website, including radio and television programmes about Charles Darwin and Isaac Newton. Three series of his current Radio 4 show Mark Steel’s in Town are available from the iTunes if you get a taste for his blokish, lefty humour, which I hope you do.

    She doesn’t really do stand up, but Sandi Toksvig is the best host The News Quiz has ever had. I don’t know if you’re familiar with the programme; it’s been remade in the US with Lewis Black in the chair, but I think they’ve only done a handful of episodes. Mark is a regular on the UK version, along with the Aldershot Nightingale, Jeremy Hardy; Sue Perkins, Susan Calman, Fred Macaulay and others. Jezza and Perkins are atheists. I’m not sure about the other two; they both live and work in Scotland, where religion is much more contentious than it is South of the border. Frankly, who cares as long as they’re funny?

    Anyhoo, News Quiz episodes are available on the iTunes or probably the BBC shop. Or youtube, as far as I know. Or just tune in to Radio 4 or Radio 4 Extra. If you’re lucky, you might catch an old episode of Hancock’s Half Hour or Just a Minute as well.


    In reply to #24 by phil rimmer:

    In reply to #22 by Big Gus:

    In reply to #11 by phil rimmer:

    Ian Hislop, Milton Jones, Miranda Hart and a few others are Christian also. Marcus Brigstocke is atheist but anti fuss, somewhat Alain de Bottonish, but only Skinner has deeply embarrassed himself with actual Christian apologia….and it seems never since

    Miles Jupp and Hugh Dennis are Christians. Both of them children of clergymen, I think I’m right in saying. Go figure. I do have a sneaking respect for comedians who don’t deny their religious faith in the current, wonderful though it is, climate of rationalism in the UK. It must be like being a Thatcher-supporting comic in the 80s trying to do a set at the Comedy Store. Getting cheap laughs at religion is like shooting fish in a barrel.

    • In reply to #35 by Katy Cordeth:

      In reply to #26 by rjohn19:

      For us colonists, how about a listing of the British atheist comedians I might track down on youtube? I’d love to hear them. Better still would be a few links.

      Mark Steel is a favourite of mine. Almost his entire back catalogue of material is available to download fre…

      As I recall Miles Jupp (v funny) though he studied theology isn’t a Christian. Hugh Dennis is a declared Christian.

      Mark Steele is hugely informative but a little too inoffensive for me unlike Sandi Toksvig who is awesome, just awesome. She can deliver a fatal blow with such lightness and speed that the charm is never sullied. Jezza has moments of real genius when he unexpectedly plays on stereotypes and Sue Perkins is my ideal drinking partner, devastatingly honest.

  11. Speaking as a lifelong non-believer in the supernatural, I can only say that from my own experience of living in Britain, Christianity appears to have become a minority interest for most, certainly in London, where I live. The Telegraph article seems to back up my view. Much as some of the Telegraph readers would love the paper to sing the praises of the CoE in particular and Christianity in general, the paper has to recognise the realities of its readership.

    As to the silly idea that Islam will take over, IMO, it won’t. It will be tamed in the same way that Christianity was, by being tested against reality. Indeed a Nobel Prize for the first Islamic scholar to show evidence of a flying horse with a / the prophet on its back.

    As for comedians, I have a soft spot for Pat Condell’s humour. Not to all tastes I admit, but pretty dam hard hitting. And who can beat the late great George Carlin’s Religion is Bullshit ? Sorry I don’t know how to do the blue links. Any hints out there?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjVLJKR6g7U

  12. In reply to #40 by phil rimmer:

    In reply

    I read a lengthy article about Tim Minchin in today’s paper.( he is soon to appear as Judas in a production of Jesus Christ Superstar over here). They maintained that he was currently living in Nth London…no suggestion of permanence. Ha ha. I think we’ll still be able to claim him as his parents are Australian.

  13. The most eviscerating comedian about Religion is a colonial. jim Jefferies ( an out and out confirmed Aussie) He scorches the air blue and if that isn’t your thing that can put you off completely. Most of his routines are on YouTube and I can watch them again and again and laugh my socks off.

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