Christianity Declines in U.S., Filipino Churches Grow

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The Philippines is now a missionary sending nation, as Christianity declines in the U.S.

Pew Research: Religious affiliation and attendance are declining in the USA. Towards 2021, the trend continues spiraling downwards. In 2018, over 4,000 churches closed in the US, while 1,500 clergies leave the pastoral ministry each month.[Shepherd Watch]

The “empty pulpit crisis” is a growing phenomenon. Percentage point change between 2009 and 2019 shows the following decline:

Generation X
Millennial
Conservative Republicans
Liberal Democrats

-8
-16
-7
-17

American church membership falls below the majority for the first time in 2021 report

Gallup data saw a steady decline since 2000. In 2020, 47% of U.S. adults belonged to a church, synagogue, or mosque, falling less than 50 percent for the first time in history.

In 2016, a year after same-sex marriage was legalized, Christianity was the largest religion in the USA, with a combined 73.7% among Christians and Catholics. [Gallup]

Christian gatherings since then are at least 50 percent empty, except “prosperity Gospel churches,” which continue to thrive.

Despite efforts to make the church experience vibrant by adopting “concert hall worship,” church scandals, pastors meddling in politics may have dissuaded Americans to have a religious preference.

Christian revival in the Philippines

The Philippines is the only Catholic country in Asia. Catholics were 80.58% and Protestants 10% in 2015.

As Catholics and Protestants decline in the west, the Evangelical Christians in the Philippines increased 14% from 2011 to 2017; Roman Catholics increased 8% from 2010 to 2015.

Philippines, now a missionary-sending country

Towards the 19th century, America was the beacon of Christianity. Hundreds, if not thousands of American missionaries, came to the Philippines and established churches.

In the late 1990s, Jesus is Lord (JIL) Charismatic movement became the fastest-growing church in and outside the Philippines. The University of Santo Tomas (UST), established in 1611, is the only “Pontifical and Royal” university outside the Vatican.

In 2020, Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle became “Prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples” under the Roman Curia, responsible for missionary work.

Today, Evangelicalism is strong in the country. One of the country’s fastest-growing Christian churches is Christ Commission Fellowship (CCF), established in 1984.

UST is the only “Pontifical and Royal” university outside the Vatican.

CCF Social media reach

Christ’s Commission Fellowship (CCF) social media reach has more followers than the USA’s largest churches combined. It has more than 500,000 followers on YouTube; over 1.5 Million followers on social media.

In 2019, CCF had over 100,000 members and 70 satellites in the Philippines. It has 600 small groups in East Asia and over 12,000 house churches and small groups in South Asia. 

CCF International satellites are located in 40 countries, including churches in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, HK, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Macao, Malaysia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Poland, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia and Singapore.

CCF has over 1.5 Million followers in social media.

Conservative Christians under attack.

CCF Senior Pastor, Peter Tan Chi preaching.

What happened to the Philippines?

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