The headline Findings as reported in the Media and Online
On the BBC Website
The Guardian has a random selection of fun facts from the census that don't have much strategic relevance. But at the local level, as for example in our local parish, we need to work out how to relate to particular clustered communities, such as Romanians, Polish and third generation Gujeratis..
The Census tells us nothing about religious beliefs. It is a simple tick box question aimed to count faith identity.
There are no surprises in the data. A simple tick box religious identity question is a very poor way of assessing religiosity, vitality of faith communities, or the number of faithful followers of Jesus.
the multicultural cities like London and Birmingham the ones where Christianity is relatively thriving and vibrant, while it is in rural and coastal 95% White Brit places that the church is in decline. There is a strong case that multi faith competition strengthens the life and health of followers of Jesus.
The data from census shows cultural / nominal / Christian identity is declining. It is no longer the default for (white) English people to say they are CofE. And the identity statements of those who are counted as Muslim, Hindu, Sikh, Jewish are about ethnoreligious identity rather than religious practice. On the other the mainstream denominational churches are certainly in trouble.. but the data that shows that is around declining attendance / membership and the ageing demographic profile of those who do attend. The data around that is harder to collect and less reliable but the broad trends there are clear. I think though it is right to be hopeful that in a situation where Christianity is a minority faith among many and none, this in itself tends to strengthen the core active, strongly believing faithful people who drive the mission of the kingdom forward, and eventually growth and renewal will follow.
Some Random Comments from others that I like and agree with
Christians still make up a plurality if not a majority which is better than nothing and B: I don't think the number of Christians has actually fallen. What has is the number of people using Christian/Church of England as a cultural identifier when what they mean is agnostic.
I'd be more interested in church attendance. People used to tick c of e because they knew they weren't Hindu or Muslim. Now they tick no religion.
it's not surprise really is it? Probably just more honest. When you look at Talking Jesus type research, active Christians make up less than 10% I believe
The number ticking "Christian" has never been a measure of the number of Christians. All we are seeing is the end of Christendom. This is no bad thing
I would rather see the real numbers of active Christians than some one who just thinks they are born a Christian because of our heritage.
On the Nones https://www.theosthinktank.co.uk/.../the-nones-who-are...This is an interesting and helpful piece of research