Saturday, February 13, 2010

Christian churches in Canada fading out: USA next?

From USA Today-

Olympics fans heading to Vancouver might want to visit a vanishing cultural treasure while they're in Canada -- local churches.

Canada has become a "post-Christian society" where once-dominant Anglicanism has "moved to the margins of public life," according to a bleak study reported by Michael Valpy at the Globe and Mail.

A new assessment of the state of the church in Canada looks at the Anglican Diocese of British Columbia and then across the country and concludes that,

... at the present rate of decline -- a loss of 13,000 members per year -- only one Anglican would be left in Canada by 2061.

... Nationally, between 1961 and 2001, the church lost 53 per cent of its membership, declining to 642,000 from 1.36 million. Between 1991 and 2001 alone, it declined by 20 per cent.

The report zeros in on Vancouver and the adjacent Gulf Islands, suggesting closing or preparing to shutter nearly two in three of its Anglican churches now that the Anglican population is

... one generation away from extinction ... The unchurched are not coming to us.

Only the Roman Catholic Church is holding steady and the report attributes that to immigration.

More here-

1 comment:

Daniel Weir said...

Canadian theologian Douglas John Hall has observed many times that it is likely that churches in Canada and the US will follow those in western Europe in becoming less and less central in their countries. Hall sees this as being possibly a good thing as being a church member is a matter of - to use words from the titles of the books in his trilogy - thinking, professing and confessing the faith, and not simple a matter of social conformity. As someone said about the situation in India, "When everyone is a Christian then no one is a Christian."