Those who see only doom and gloom in UK Church statistics will be interested to know that a recent study signals that the Church in London has been put on a growth path. One in nine Londoners now go to church, and church attendance in the capital has grown by 16% in the past seven years. This significant turn-around is reported by the Financial Times. Anglican mega churches like Holy Trinity Brompton (home of Alpha) and St Helen’s Bishopsgate account for the growth, as well as Hillsong, a mega church originating in Australia. This success is matched by a plethora of African Pentecostal movements, including the Nigerian Kingsway International Christian Centre and Kensington Temple.
Research by academics at Cranmer Hall, a theological college in Durham, entitled ‘Church Growth in Britain from 1980 to the Present’ revealed that there are 500,000 Christians in black majority churches in Britain. Sixty years ago there were hardly any. At least 5,000 new churches have been started in Britain since 1980 – and this is an undercount, the true figure is probably higher. There are one million Christians in Britain from black, Asian and other minority ethnic communities. The adult membership of the Anglican Diocese of London has risen by over 70% since 1990.
Analysing the Cranmer Hall results, David Goodhew points out in the Church of England Newspaper that some places are easier to plant churches in. “Church growth happens most often along the ‘trade routes’ of Britain – places where there is population growth, immigration and economic dynamism.”
Source: The Financial Times; Cranmer Hall
BIBLE STUDY: 1 Peter 2:4-5
PRAISE: God for this very positive trend. Pray that all Londoners will have access to the light of the Gospel that the city will be a beacon to the world.