Interesting article on the growth of Evangelicalism in Britain. Interestingly, the article goes beyond immigrant Christianity. Money quote: "Evangelical Christianity might be heavily African-influenced but it’s also spreading among the natives as well. Yesterday I attended an Evangelical service for a friend's baby's naming ceremony (not a baptism, as we papists call it – this group don’t believe in infant baptisms).
The happy clappy thing is not my scene – I’d need at least four Stellas before I could get up and dance in a church without dying of a cringe-related stroke – but it’s easy to see why Evangelical Christianity is rapidly spreading in the UK. The median age of this church was about 20; in most Catholic parishes in London you're considered an energetic young go-getter if you're under 75; the Evangelicals have many working-class members, while very, very few
The Evangelicals also aggressively court people of other faiths, including Muslims – while the Catholics would rather meet other religious leaders at (preferably tax-payer funded) interfaith meetings where they can spout platitudes about faith communities, as if religious identity is fixed, not a choice.
And in three decades of living in London I have also never seen so many people of different racial backgrounds united in a feeling of brotherhood – Londoners generally tolerate each other, and muddle on, but whether it’s the NHS surgery or the Notting Hill Carnival, the theme is begrudging tolerance, not affection. A small church can do far more for race relations than all the state-subsidised quangos and anti-racism campaigners in Christendom.
Many Catholic and Anglican churches are packed on Sunday mornings with young parents trying to get their kids into the best schools, and it shows – the air is thick with hypocrisy. In contrast the Evangelicals, whether anyone likes it or not, believe, and it shows. Doubt and scepticism are fine things but a religious community that does not believe in its own message will wither and die, and be replaced by others. I’m not remotely surprised Evangelical Christianity is on the march in England."