Australian Churches are More Diverse than Ever—Survey

According to the latest National Church Life Survey (NCLS) report, most Australian Christians were born overseas.

The survey collected data from over 280,000 church members and the results showed that over one-third of them were first- and second-generation migrants, reports ABC News.

To reach out to local communities, local churches usually organize community meals and musical events. Members are encouraged to invite guests for these events. However, many church goers wanted new meaningful activities.

“The proportion of attendants born overseas was 28% in 2006, and it’s now 36% in 2016,” said survey director Ruth Powell. She believes that Australia could be the country that has the most number of multicultural congregations in the world.

Australia’s churches are increasingly becoming diverse. Powell suggested that leadership positions should also be open to changes to accommodate the various needs of the congregation.

Powell’s suggestion was supported by another NCLS report, which showed that members want their local church to try something new, Insights Magazine reports.

To reach out to local communities, local churches usually organize community meals and musical events. Members are encouraged to invite guests for these events. However, many church goers wanted new meaningful activities.

NCLS surveyed 10,183 adults and 392 children (8 to 14-years-old) from 275 local churches. Seventy-two percent of the respondents agreed for their congregations to bring innovative faith activities. Eight out of ten of those surveyed are excited for new approaches in their churches.

Another question from the survey asked about what local churches should prioritize. The results showed that 36% of attenders liked their churches to prioritize worship services that are nurturing; 29% wanted spiritual growth as a priority. Only 15% of respondents wanted new approaches to be a priority of their church.

Reverend Fie Marino, Multicultural Ministry Consultant for the Uniting Church, welcomes the necessary adjustments to make the church an engaging community for all.

“We’re working towards coming up with ways where the diversity of the church is able to speak into a space that they feel like they belong,” he said.

Sources:
ABC News
Insights Magazine

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Joyce has more than 15 years experience writing news, industry articles and blogs for the private and public sectors. Most of her career was spent writing technical documentation for a software company in the Philippines.

She earned a B.A. in Communication Arts with a concentration in writing from the University of the Philippines, Los Baños. During her leisure time, Joyce pursues her interest reading fiction and playing with her dogs. She can be contacted at Joyce@onechristianvoice.com.