Steve Bruce in the news.scotsman.com
DEATH OF GREAT BRITIAN'S CHURCH
The English lost their interest in religion first; Scots (at least those of the countryside and the burgh) still "took" the People's Friend and the Sunday Post (the medicinal verb was deliberate) and dutifully attended the national church. Deprived of political autonomy, a stateless nation sustained its somewhat joyless but utterly reliable soul by adhering to the Presbyterian Kirk.
No more. When the prudent son of the manse was a student, the Kirk had 1.34 million members. The current membership is less than half that. More worrying for the Church of Scotland's future, only 7,500 babies were christened last year, 500 fewer than the year before. Not all of those will go on to become actively involved, but this is the pool from which recruits are drawn. The effect of it drying up can be seen in every congregation in the land: the men and women in the pews are mostly old. In a major 2001 survey, the most popular religion among Scots under 35 was "None".
The Kirk's loss of 60 per cent of attenders since 1960 is dramatic enough, but the full extent of secularization becomes clear if we take a longer time span. In 1851, about half of Scots regularly attended church, most had some formal Christian instruction, and basic Christian ideas were taken for granted. Now, only 10 per cent attend church and the proportion familiar with Christianity is barely larger. In 1900, being Christian was expected; in 2005, it is exceptional.
JB here: Thanks to sheepcrib.blogspot.com for the tip.
Where goest the U.S.?
If you are a devout believer, you undoubtedly think God's blessings upon the U.S. are largely due to an Evangelical remnant that still worships God. But what happens when that remnant gets too small? Will all be lost then? Will a nation implode upon its own foolishness and desire to have no moral laws setting boundaries about its own lusts and wants. Hmm