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Canada to lose 9000 churches over next 10 years
Canada to lose 9000 churches over next 10 years
Canadian News

Canada to lose 9000 churches over next 10 years 

“Mass extinction” has taken on a new meaning. A national charity that works to save old buildings estimates that 9,000 churches in Canada will be lost in the next decade.

The oncoming loss of churches should perhaps be no surprise, as in many ways, the writing has been on the wall for some time now.

In April of 2018, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saint John announced it was “no longer in a positive financial situation,” along with plans to close several of its church buildings.

Between April and September, nine churches have shut their doors, including one church in the Fredericton region, three in the Miramichi region and five in the Saint John region.

“I don’t take any pleasure in closing churches,” Bishop Robert Harris told CBC News. “We did what we had to do.”

The changing makeup of Canada

Canadians who identify as non-religious make up the second fastest spiritual affiliation in the country, following Islam, which just outpaces atheism for the number one fastest growing religious affiliation.

Take Saskatchewan, for example. In Govan, Sask., a town with a population of 197, there used to be seven active churches. Today, five of those have shut their doors for good, as just the Lutheran and Catholic churches remain, hosting part-time services and funerals.

On the contrast, the Islamic centre in Saskatoon has experiencing a steady upward trajectory in terms of attendance.

“Friday services have been split in two so local streets aren’t clogged with traffic. City officials and nearby residents are working with the centre to answer questions like where to put more parking?”

In the very Catholic province of Quebec, over 30 of the 54 churches near Montreal were slated for closure, according to a report by the Diocese of St-Jerome, with local congregations now scrambling to find ways to keep the doors open.

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