British churches are decreasing in members, but new statistics claim that an increased number of immigrants are slowing the rate of decline.
Immigrants from Romania and Poland and coming to England, bringing with them their own church traditions as well as forming new churches; additionally the “Fresh Expressions” church movement is gaining popularity in the U.K.
Researcher Peter Brierley said, “This alleviation is due to two major changes over the last few years -- the large number of new black and other immigrant churches which have been started, and the increasing success of new gatherings often called ‘Fresh Expressions,’ which is becoming a generic name for all kinds of usually fairly informal gatherings like Messy Church, pub groups or cafe churches, mission-minded churches, Churches Without Walls (especially in Scotland) as well as those specifically named as Fresh Expressions.”
Almost 300 denomination were surveyed for the study. Brierley’s research show that between 2005 and 2012, 700 new Christian churches were formed in greater London reports Christian Today.
Brierley said that the new churches are helping the British church decline, but will not likely solve the problem altogether. He said, “While these increased are not sufficient to bring overall growth, these two key movements have, however, in effect, pushed the previous rate of decline back by about five years.”
Publication date: June 3, 2014