Skip to comments.Report shows global Christianity shifting to Africa
Posted on 02/07/2012 5:08:18 PM PST by wmfights
With 2.18 billion adherents, Christianity has become a truly global religion over the past century, as rapid growth in developing nations offset declines in Christianity's traditional strongholds, according to a recently released report.
Billed as the most comprehensive and reliable study to date, the Pew Research Center's "Global Christianity" reports on self-identified Christian populations based on more than 2,400 sources of information, especially census and survey data.
Findings illustrate major shifts since 1910, when two-thirds of the world's Christians lived in Europe. Now only one in four Christians lives in Europe. Most of the rest are distributed across the Americas (37 percent), sub-Saharan Africa (24 percent) and the Asia-Pacific region (13 percent).
The report confirms Christianity's standing as the world's largest religion, with 32 percent of the global population. Islam is second, with about 23 percent, according to a 2009 Pew report.
A close look at the details reveals a few ironies:
Although Christianity traces its beginnings to the Middle East and North Africa, only 4 percent of residents in these regions claim the Christian faith today.
Meanwhile, the faith has grown exponentially in sub-Saharan Africa, from just 9 percent of the population in 1910 to 63 percent today. Nigeria, home to more than 80 million Christians, has more Protestants than Germany, where the Protestant Reformation began.
"As a result of historic missionary activity and indigenous Christian movements by Africans, there has been this change from about one in 10 (sub-Saharan Africans) identifying with Christianity in 1910 to about six in 10 doing so today," said Conrad Hackett, lead researcher on the Global Christianity report.
The report also sheds light on the difficult question of how many Chinese are Christians. Researchers have struggled to get reliable numbers, since China's policies on religion are thought to discourage Christians from self-identifying as such in official surveys.
Adjusting for such variables, Pew researchers believe Christianity has flourished despite a policy forbidding Christianity among Communist Party members. Researchers estimate the Christian community in China includes 5 percent of the population, or 67 million.
Europe may be collapsing as a Christian area, but Christianity isn't dying. BTW, I think the numbers for China are easily double what they project.
It is said that upwards of 100 million to 150 million people in China probably practice the Christian faith.
pssssst . . . . . . . SHHHH!
Don’t tell the muzzies this . . . . . . . . they think THEY are the world’s largest cult . . . . . . er, religion.
Christianity is exploding in China and Russia.
“Global Christianity: A Report on the Size and Distribution of the World’s Christian Population”
I rather doubt that. Even in the house churches, very much is nominal. Much is mystical and not related to New Testament truth. There's a lot of wildfire claiming to be "Christian." Missionary journals and magazines in the west capture anything in China with a cross on a building and call it "Christian" to jerk on the emotions of western church-goers to raise money for organizations, &c. True Christians in China will be seen taking great risks in the area of evangelization and church planting in opposition to the China Christian Council's "Three-Self Patriotic Movement." But in huge cities where there are supposed to be millions of Christians, you will hardly ever encounter a Christian, even when taking risks like distributing Gospel literature on the Metro or on a packed bus. Reason? There are not really as many true Christians in China as the "Christian" media likes to project.
Maybe oozing a bit, but not really exploding, unless you just gather the numbers of anything nominally "Christian."
Thanks for the info.
Praise the Lord!
Everywhere, may all people have their eyes opened so that they turn from darkness to light and turn from the enemy’s power to God’s holy power and by faith receive forgiveness of sin and share with those who have a place in His eternal Kingdom!