Christianity has been on the decline in the UK in practice and social favor. However, a recent study shows that Generation Z have a sightly more favorable impression of Christianity that Millenials:
A major survey in the U.K. of 4,087 British adults on their attitudes toward religious people revealed that those of Generation Z are less likely to have a negative perception of Christians than millennials are.
According to results from the ComRes survey, released Thursday, 12 percent of 18- to 24-yearChri-olds agreed (and 50 percent disagreed) that Christians are a “negative force in society.” Among 25- to 34-year-olds, 14 percent agreed with the statement and 40 percent disagreed.
The youngest cohort is also more likely to say they trust Christians than millennials are. Forty-eight percent of those 18-24 disagreed with the statement “I would be more likely to trust a person with no religious beliefs than a Christian.” Among those aged 25-34, 39 percent disagreed.
Other findings show that 11 percent of the younger generation and 14 percent of millennials said they find it harder to talk to someone when they know that person is a Christian.
Around a third from both age groups don’t believe “Christians are more tolerant than other people.”
Across all age groups, a majority said they never attended church.
The poll revealed that 65 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds never went to church; 9 percent said they are regular churchgoers. Meanwhile, 70 percent of 25- to 34-year-olds never attended church while 11 percent said they regularly attend.
Krish Kandiah, a theologian and author who commissioned the survey, told The Daily Telegraph that there are tricky elements to measuring how often and why young people today attend church, and suggested that sometimes they visit even if they don’t believe in God.
“Things like the Alpha course were designed for people who were coming to church but didn’t necessarily believe the stuff,” Kandiah said.
“So I think the church has been following this trend for a while, which is maybe why we are seeing this uptick in younger people.”
Stuart Haynes, a spokesman for the Church of England diocese of Liverpool, said that cathedrals are often attended by students looking for peace and quiet.
“Not just the cathedral but also a couple of other city center churches certainly attract students, and there’s that sense of two things — when you’re away from your home and family finding a community that you can connect with, and the other thing is that notion of peace,” Haynes said.
“Being a student nowadays, there’s a lot of stress and pressure, and having that time to connect and be at peace, and get away from that stress and pressure and have that chill out time is something that we do see.
“You do often get people who wander in, sit quietly for five or ten minutes and then wander off again. It’s seen as a safe place to collect your thoughts.”
The Christian Post reported on declining church attendances in the CofE in March, and examined a number of strategies the church is using to try and pull young people in.
Adrian Harris, head of the digital team at the CofE, told CP at the time that digital innovations are aimed at reaching younger demographics.
“For example, half of the people who we engage with on Instagram are under the age of 34. On our main website, 17 percent of our audience comes from the 25-34 group,” Harris said.
“So we are actually seeing some really encouraging numbers from younger people who are interested in Christianity and what we are doing.” (source)
Rather than be a cause for hope, this study is an example of the “dead cat bounce” principle.
In finance, “dead cat bounce” is a term used to indicate small increases in the price or value of an asset in sharp or terminal decline as it continues to decline. It is based on the idea that even if one throws a dead cat hard enough, its corpse will bounce before it stops moving.
To visualize the “dead cat bounce,” imagine a stock with a price of $100 USD. For systematic reasons, the value of the stock goes into a sharp decline, dropping to $30 over a period of time. Once it reaches $30, there is an increase in its value up to $50, before dropping to $20, at which point it rises again to $30, and then drops to $10. Throughout the entire time of the stock’s decline, there have been small “bounces” in price increases, but these increases don’t lead to a tangible, long-term increase in the stock’s value.
Christianity in the UK is, sadly, going through a “dead cat bounce” right now. The reasons for the slight increases in the popularity of Christianity have nothing to do with changes to fundamentals in Britian itself, but to transitory details which are not permanent in themselves. They can, and likely will disappear in time.
The decline of Christianity is rooted in the return to paganism and rejection of the Gospel by choice, coupled with the apathy of the Church and the proliferation of heresy with an unwillingness to be honest about problems in society, how they arose, and how to deal with them. This is also evidenced by the rise of homosexuality, since the LGBT represents philosophically and tangibly the antithesis of Christianity. This process of decline began with the English Revolution started under King Henry VIII, and in spite of several moments of gains, the trend in Albion since the 16th century has been one of diminishing returns.
This is also not to say that there were not opportunities for real change or revival. However, if they were not squandered, they either were ineffective at reaching the people or the people just persisted in their rejection and apostasy.
Christianity in the UK and throughout all of Europe, even at the height of Christendom, was always a very difficult “sell” to the natives, as wars with pagan tribes persisted until 1413 with the conquest of Samogita in Lithuania. Many Europeans resisted violently, and for all of the wars that were fought between Christendom and the Muslims, there was the constant threat of paganism, which manifested in the incessant, almost endless fighting between the different European nations.
Charles Martel, the great defender against the Muslims at the Battle of Tours. While his exploits against the Muslims are lauded, most of his wars were against fellow European pagans in Germany and Holland, and he spent most of his life dealing with them.
The likelihood that Christianity is going to make a serious return in England, barring a miracle, is unlikely. This also applies to much of Europe, including Italy, which has also embraced paganism. In such times, however, one should not lose hope, but look to the Savior, because He suggests that Faith will be nearly gone when He returns.
When the Son of Man returns, will He find Faith on the Earth?