Between Islam and Christianity in the Great Britain
It' s Time to Recover the Heritage of Christianity
"In England, where only about two percent of the people bother to attend church, Islam is about to become the dominant faith," comments Cal Thomas, a Syndicated Columnist in Washington.
In 2001, a National Census took place in United Kingdom. The information about citizens' religion identity was firstly collected in England. The census showed that more than seven out of ten people said that their religion was Christianity (72 percent). After Christianity, Islam was the most common faith with nearly 3 percent describing their religion as Muslim (1.6 million).
In terms of quantity, it is not so obvious that Islam is about to become the dominate faith. Islam, however, will be Christianity's major religious competitor for the foreseeable future.
Editor Sarah Joseph of "British Muslim Magazine" says, "by the year 2020 mosque attendance could surpass church attendance in Britain. Between 10,000 and 50,000 per year convert to Islam in England and that the country currently has 1.8 million Muslims."
Christianity and Islam have been confronting with each other in expanding their mission in the history. In some countries where Islam dominates, the governments usually make laws to ban conversion of faith or simply prohibit evangelization, like India and Malaysia.
Especially, within the 10/40 Window where non- Christian cultures filled, tremendous resistance to the spread of gospel exists. There are still many lands remain unreached by Christian missions.
If even in Christianity dominated countries like England, rate of conversion from Christian faith to other religion becomes high, now it comes to a time to reconsider the risk of declining Christianity in Europe and recover its glorious time.
Secularism is the greatest challenge that Christianity in Europe is facing, according to Philip Jenkins, distinguished professor of history and religious studies at Pennsylvania State University. Though people were called Christians, the church attendance rate may have revealed the truth about the importance of discipleship in the life of most Christians.
Actually, the British Islam community has experienced the same battle. The second generations of Muslim living in England feel confused about their identity as they receive pure Islam teaching from their parents even though they live in a British culture.
Chairman of the Dudley Muslim Association, Khurshid Ahmed said in a BBC programme, "the quality of education provided in our mosques in Britain has not been very adequate. We have not been able to connect sufficiently with our young people."
Being aware of the problem, the pure Islam in Britain will thrive, introducing a separatist ideology to the young Muslims, so that they are protected from the values of a modern secular and democratic Britain.