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Over Half Of The British Population No Longer Believe In God, Research Finds
Britain, it seems, is becoming an increasingly godless society, with record numbers of people adopting secular sensibilities and describing themselves as having "no religion".
For the first time ever, more than half of the population have abandoned their beliefs in divine creators (God, Allah, Yahweh, Brahman, Waheguru, Jah etc..) to become so-called atheists.
Over 53% of Brits identify as non-believers and the generational gap on religious affiliation is widening, according to the latest data from the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen).
Their research into British Social Attitudes found that only 15% of people belonged to the Church of England, 9% to the Catholic Church, 17% to other Christian denominations and 6% to other religions.
But the most prominent affiliation among Brits is with "no religion" whatsoever – a figure that's been steadily increasing since the survey began in 1983 (at which point it stood at 31%).
Head of Public Attitudes at NatCen, Roger Harding said the increase follows a "long-term trend of more and more of us not being religious."
"The differences by age are stark and with so many younger people not having a religion it's hard to see this change abating any time soon," he explains.
"These figures should cause all religious leaders to pause for thought"
Researchers insist the fall in religious affiliation is, in large part, driven by young people, with three-quarters (73%) of those aged 18 to 24 stating that they had no religion – up from 62% in 2015.
Meanwhile, just four in 10 people aged between 65 and 74 said they have no religion.
The figures, collated from a survey of 2,942 Brits, raise fresh questions over the place of churches in the running of state schools and their other state-funded privileges.
Andrew Cooper, from pro-secular charity Humanists UK, said: "how can it be right that 97% of young people are not Anglicans but 20% of schools their children will go belong to the Church of England."
"How can the Church of England remain in any meaningful sense the national legally established church, when it caters for such a small portion of the population?"
While the declining numbers can be "troubling" for the church, Reverend Stephen Cottrell, the Bishop of Chelmsford, insists "the church is not an institution."
It is a "community of men and women whose lives are centred on Christ," he said.
China is still understood to have the highest percentage of "convinced atheists", as communism, which has governed the country since 1959, regards religion as a means to oppress the working class.
By Matthew Kirby, published on 05/09/2017