Skip to content

The End of an Era, Eh: Collapse of Majority Canadian Christianity


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): Medium (Personal)

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2020/10/09

Canadian Christianity in the 2020/2021 period will lose its simple majority status in Canadian society, which demarcates the end of an era in which Canadian Christians will not recover from either in the short-term future or medium-term future if at all. In an examination of the StatsCan National Household Survey conducted in 2011, the number of Canadians who adhered to the Christian faith came to a little over two-thirds at 67.3% of the total population of the country.

That comes to 22,100,000 Canadian Christians circa 2011. When we break that down a bit more, the most significant population for Canadians were the Catholics coming to 12,800,000 people. In sum, the number of Canadians who identified or affiliated with the identity “Christian” was overwhelming in Canada. Now, we can witness a rapid shift in the demographics of the Canadian landscape. Something never seen at the inception of the bounded legal and cultural geography called “Canada,” or to the recent past.

According to Pew Research’s Michael Lipka in an article from 2019, Pew Research conducted a survey in 2018 referenced in the Lipka article from 2019, in which the numbers of self-identified Christians in Canada, in contrast to 2011 from StatsCan, was surprising. In 2018, only 55% of Canadians identified as Christian. 33,476,700 Canadians existed in 2011; 34,714,200 existed in 2012; 35,083,000 existed in 2013; 35,437,400 existed in 2014; 35,702,900 existed in 2015; 35,151,700 existed in 2016; 36,543,300 existed in 2017; and, 37,057,800 existed in 2018 — Google derived source.

Tabulating year by year, we see a stark difference. If we simply take 67.3%-55%, we come to 12.3% difference between 2011 and 2018 in the number of self-identified Christians. This is, simply and straightly, a massive difference — almost 1 out of 8 Christians who were Christians in the pie of the country aren’t now. Counting the inclusive years — 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018, thus, if years divided by 12.3%, this comes to 1.75714285714% per annum decrease, if a straight line or trend line, in the number of affiliated Christians as a proportion of the country.

When we look at the numbers given above for the total Canadian population, we can calculate, if making a convenience factor calculation (so not absolutely precise) of the number of Christians per year if as a straight line, the number of Christians in Canada as a whole in each year. Some with exceptions for an illusionary decrease in the total number of Canadians in exclusion of some Indian reserves or Aboriginal reserves/settlements. Anyhow, the calculations of percent of the pie of Canadians who are Christian each year:

· 2011: 67.3% (StatsCan).

· 2012: 65.5428571429% (Derived), or 65.54%.

· 2013: 63.7857142858% (Derived), or 63.76%.

· 2014: 62.0285714287% (Derived), or 62.03%.

· 2015: 60.2714285716% (Derived), or 60.27%.

· 2016: 58.5142857145% (Derived), or 58.51%.

· 2017: 56.7571428574% (Derived), or 56.76%.

· 2018: 55% (Pew Research).

This is the trajectory for the country if given two reliable sources, StatsCan and Pew Research. Following from this, we can extrapolate based on a nearly decade trajectory of the timeline of Christianity in the nation. The statistics on the country’s total population year by year can be seen here:

· 33,476,700 in 2011

· 34,714,200 in 2012

· 35,083,000 in 2013

· 35,437,400 in 2014

· 35,702,900 in 2015

· 35,151,700 in 2016

· 36,543,300 in 2017

· 37,057,800 in 2018

Furthermore, we can attach those calculated percentages onto the total population to come to a reasonably accurate assessment of the number of Christians in the country outside of the generic and important findings about the rapid decline of the Christian faith in the country, as follows:

· 67.3%*33,476,700=22,529,819

· 65.54%*34,714,200=22,751,686

· 63.76%*35,083,000=22,368,920

· 62.03%*35,437,400=21,981,819

· 60.27%*35,702,900=21,518,137

· 58.51%*35,151,700=20,567,259

· 56.76%*36,543,300=20,741,977

· 55% *37,057,800=20,381,790

Within this manner of examination of the statistics of Christians in Canada, the decline is palpable no matter the ways in which one cuts it, whether in raw numbers or in the percentages; Christianity is collapsing in the country in real-time, before our eyes, as the simple majority faith of the nation as well as more moderately declining in total numbers averaging (22,529,819–20,381,790=2,148,029 and then 2,148,029/7=306,861) 306,861 per year. We’ve moved from an era of monopolar religio-cultural demographics to a multipolar one. Extrapolated by 5 years, we come to 2023 from 2018:


This from 2018 to 2023 means fewer total Christians, as follows:


So, 18,847,485 Christians in Canada circa 2023. With the 1.75714285714%% per annum decrease, it becomes the following:

1.75714285714%*5=8.7857142857, so 8.7857142857%

This is a decline from 55%:

55–8.7857142857=46.2142857143, so 46.2142857143% or 46.21%

In 2023, one possibility given the trendline is a mere 18,847,485 Christians in Canada comprising 46.21% of the total population. With 2021 as the year in which the 55% of 2018 moves to below 50%, demarcating the era of non-simple majority Canadian Christianity and, therefore, changing the religio-cultural landscaping and self-understanding of Canadians in, at least, the short term and the medium term (Q.E.D.).


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


© Scott Douglas Jacobsen and In-Sight Publishing 2012-Present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen and In-Sight Publishing with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: