- Two photos show Sunday morning services in churches in East London
- The third shows worshippers gathered for Friday midday prayers outside a nearby mosque
- The difference in numbers could hardly be more dramatic
The empty pews at churches just yards from an overcrowded mosque
“What these pictures suggest is that, on current trends, Christianity in this country is becoming a religion of the past, and Islam is one of the future.”
Pay no attention to the 2011 Census that told us 33.2 million people in England and Wales describe themselves as Christians.
For if you want a more telling insight into religion in the United Kingdom today, just look at these photographs. The story they tell is more revealing than any survey.
The difference in numbers could hardly be more dramatic. At St George’s, some 12 people have congregated to celebrate Holy Communion.
When the church was built in the early 18th century, it was designed to seat 1,230.
Numbers are similar at St Mary’s, opened in October 1849. Then, it could boast a congregation of 1,000. Today, as shown in the picture, the worshippers total just 20.
While the two churches are nearly empty, the Brune Street Estate mosque has a different problem — overcrowding.
The mosque itself is little more than a small room rented in a community centre, and it can hold only 100.
However, on Fridays, those numbers swell to three to four times the room’s capacity, so the worshippers spill out onto the street, where they take up around the same amount of space as the size of the near-empty St Mary’s down the road.