October 10, 2012
Christianity is the largest faith in Africa, a study presented last week at El Jadida University in Morocco reports.
Christians account for 46.53 per cent, Muslims 40.46 per cent and traditional African religions 11.8 per cent of the continent’s population, participants in the conference organized by the Centre for Studies on New Religions learned.
Conference chairman Professor Massimo Introvigne noted that the Christian faith has witnessed remarkable growth in Africa over the past century. In 1900 ten million Christians lived in Africa while in 2012 this number had grown to 500 million. Only 2 per cent of Christians were African in 1900 but 20 per cent of Christians reside in Africa today, the conference learned.
Across Africa 31 countries have are predominantly Christian, 21 Muslim and 6 traditional African religions. The rapid growth of the Christian faith may be one of the causes of the continent’s increased sectarian tensions, Prof. Introvigne noted.
“Some Islamic ultra-fundamentalists consider it scandalous that there are more Christians than Muslims in Africa and proceed to persecute and kill Christians in countries such as Nigeria, Mali, Somalia and Kenya. The way the ultra-fundamentalists see it, today, the battle which will determine whether the world will be Muslim or Christian is being fought in Africa. And that Islam is losing. This is why they are responding with bombs.”