We are currently trialling our new-look independent.co.uk website - please send any feedback to beta@independent.co.uk

Home News

Britain is ‘post-Christian’ says former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams


Britain is a “post-Christian” country, the former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has said as the argument continues over the role of religion in this country.

Lord Williams of Oystermouth, who is now Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, said Britain’s “cultural memory is still quite strongly Christian”. But he argued that it was “post-Christian” because not everyone shared the same religion.

“A Christian nation can sound like a nation of committed believers, and we are not that,” he said. “Equally, we are not a nation of dedicated secularists.”

Lord Williams said that the UK was still “very much saturated by this [Christian] vision of the world and shaped by it”, but he admitted that it was likely to suffer from  “further shrinkage of awareness and commitment” in coming years.

He was speaking after David Cameron said that Britain should be “more confident about our status as a Christian country” and “more evangelical” about faith, comments that were criticised by leading atheists and others.