But what does this mean for the church?
In this interview for Stories Worth Sharing, the Bishop of Chelmsford, The Right Revered Stephen Cottrell said ‘people are very interested in the things of faith, but…won’t necessary identify as…religious’. Bishop Cottrell said although the survey’s results were a challenge to the church’s ministerial mission, it did not mean the church was failing.
The survey conducted by the National Centre for Social Research, showed that 53% of adults have no religious belief. It also revealed there was a decline in the number of people who identified as Anglican. Out of the 2,942 adults asked, 15% said they were Anglican.
Responding to the figure that 71% of 18-25 year olds have no religious affiliation, Bishop Cottrell said young people are more comfortable describing themselves as spiritual rather than religious, but this often means, ‘an openness to the possibility of God…and often a deep attraction to the person of Christ’.