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By 2040 there may be more people religious in developed countries than there are today

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“By 2040 there may be more people religious in developed countries than there are today” quoted from Higher School of Ecnomics.

It is a striking conclusion. Especially when you consider that the religious involvement in the Netherlands, for example, has been steadily decreasing for years. Last year it reached a new low, when for the first time more than half of the Dutch population no longer counted as a religious group. Nevertheless, religion has not yet disappeared. Indeed, researchers predict in a new study that the number of believers in rich countries will actually increase over the next twenty years.

Big problem

It is known that older people are more religious than younger people. However, it is not clear whether this is due to the fact that people tend to become more religious with age, or whether it has to do with secularisation, where older people are more faithful to their faith than young people. Researchers decided to analyse this problem. In total, they examined 16 rich countries, including Australia, the USA, Canada, Great Britain, Israel, New Zealand, Japan, Germany and other European countries.

More religious with age

The researchers used different models and methods. And finally they came to an interesting conclusion. The research shows that as you get older, you are more likely to adhere to a religion. For example, elderly people are more likely to believe in God, go to church and find it important to share their faith with children.

If we look at Japan, we can already see this. “Japan is known as one of the countries where the ageing of the population is most visible,” says Korotaev. “It is therefore probably no coincidence that a number of important indicators show a slowdown in secularisation trends and even a certain revival of religion.