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The latest U.K. census has found that less than half of people in England and Wales consider themselves Christian. It is first time the country’s official religion has been followed by a minority of the population. Figures released Tuesday show that 46.2% of the population of England and Wales described themselves as Christian in the 2021 census, down from 59.3% in 2011. Some 37% said they had no religion, up from 25% in 2011. Secularism campaigners said the shift should trigger a rethink of the way religion is entrenched in British society. Almost 82% of people in England and Wales identified as white in the census, down from 86% in 2011.
To the Northwest Michigan Community Action Agency for offering emergency home repair and weatherization help to local residents with low to moderate incomes. Many improvements and repairs can be done at no cost, or with a no-interest loan. Residents can call the agency’s Housing and Energy Efficiency Services at 231-947-3780 or email HEESintake@NMCAA.net.
Ukrainian counter-intelligence services have turned their sights on some Orthodox clergy whom they suspect of pro-Russian sentiment and activity. Authorities searched multiple church complexes in recent days. This includes the highly revered Pechersk Lavra monastic complex in Kyiv. Authorities said they conducted an extensive search after sentiments in support of the “Russian world” concept were voiced there. That concept says Moscow is the spiritual and political protector of a territory that includes Russia and Ukraine. Many Orthodox clergy are fiercely pro-Ukrainian, but others continue to embrace the “Russian world” idea. Authorities said they found pro-Russian materials being prepared by a bishop for distribution
Pope Francis has given the World Cup a shout-out. Speaking at the end of his weekly Wednesday general audience, Francis sent greetings to the players, fans and spectators who are following the World Cup. He prayed that it may be an occasion for brotherhood and peace. Francis is a life-long soccer fan and has long promoted sport as a way of promoting solidarity and fraternity.
India’s 110 million indigenous tribespeople are scattered across various states and fragmented into hundreds of clans, with different legends, different languages and different words for their gods. Yet, what binds at least 5 million of them together is Sarna Dharma, a belief system that shares common threads with the world’s many ancient nature-worshipping religions. But it is also a faith that isn’t codified under Indian law, compelling many nature worshippers to associate themselves with other recognized religions. The followers of Sarna Dharma say a formal recognition of their religion would help the community preserve its culture and history in a country where the rights of the ethnic population have slowly eroded.