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Only a few hours after the census statistics were released this week, we were inundated with views and opinions.  People using these statistics to try and get their message across, people using them to raise their own particular agenda.

Prof Richard Dawkins was one of he first, these were his words on the fact that almost a third of the population of Wales 32% have declared that they have no religion; "I congratulate the people of Wales in coming out ahead of the rest of the United Kingdom in this respect - well done."

I’m sure I’m not alone in agreeing with Mr Dawkins to some extent on these findings, I’m also glad that a lot more of my countrymen are being a little bit more honest about their faith or lack thereof.

But what use will we as church leaders/members in Wales make of these statistics?

Will they be of any use to us – in our planning?  In trying to better understand our communities?

Will the fact that over a quarter of the population of Wales have no formal qualifications, alter the way we deliver sermons, prepare Bible studies, do evangelism?

Will statistics on the Welsh language make us consider some form of bilingual or Welsh language outreach? 

Is the fact that 10% more people in Wales than in 2001 consider themselves to have no religion, a positive or a negative stat?  Will it alter our evangelism?  Not the message – never the message, but the starting point, the discussions etc.

Will you make use of the census? 

If so – how? 

If not – why?

Comment, discuss, disagree, but more importantly pray that in 2021 these figures will have changed.  That in 2021 more than 58% would not only consider themselves Christian – but will truly know, worship and trust in Christ.

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