Losing our religion: the number of faithful Australians is plummeting and Christians are now a shrinking minority
- Research conducted by Roy Morgan found that 45 percent of Aussies have no religion
- It was also found that only 53 percent could identify a religion they belonged to
- Meanwhile, the number that regularly attends church has remained the same
Nearly half of Australia’s population has no religious affiliation, new research shows, with Christians now making up a shrinking minority.
The number of Australians who described themselves as having no religion was 26 percent in 2003, but this has since risen to 45 percent this month, Roy Morgan data shows.
A survey of people 14 and older also found that only 53 percent of the population could identify a religion they belonged to – a drop from 73 percent in 2003.
Nearly half of the Australian population has no religious affiliation, according to new research (photo St George Cathedral in Perth)
Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine said the numbers show the sharp shift in attitudes towards religion.
“Australia and Australians have changed in many different ways over the past two decades, and changes in the role religion plays in people’s lives is a prime example of this,” she said.
“There has been a drop of more than 24% in those who describe themselves as Christians, from a majority of 68.1% to a minority of 44.0% during that period.”
For those who do identify with a religion, the number who regularly attends church or worship has “remained remarkably constant.”
In 2003, 18 percent of people said they attended church often, and by 2020 this number will only drop to 17 percent.
Last year, a teachers’ union called for the removal of scripture classes from public schools, saying they should instead be taught outside normal school hours.
The survey also found that the percentage of those who identified as Christians had also dropped significantly
The president of the New South Wales Teachers Federation, Angelo Gavrielatos, previously told Daily Mail Australia that religious education should take place outside of school hours as it is a private matter for parents and their children.
“School time is for teaching and learning, and special religious education should not disrupt the crucial learning process of students during the school day,” said Mr Gavrielatos.
‘Doing differently denies students valuable time to meet their educational needs.’
A 2016 census said a growing proportion of the population had a non-Christian faith due to immigration.
The Sikh religion is one of the fastest growing groups in Australia with more than 125,000 members.