“On all likely measures of success, given the demographics of the church, it is unlikely we will see a net growth in church membership within the next 30 years,” he said.
While at present 18 people per 1,000 regularly attend church, over the next 30 years that is expected to almost halve with only 10 per 1,000 people attending church.
A report by the Archbishop’s Council for the years up to 2014, meanwhile, shows a steady decline each year in the number of people coming to Sunday service.
Yet other sources said the stark warning did not account for an upcoming drive in recruitment for new clergy – with sights set on a 50 per cent increase to 600 newly ordained priests a year.
John Spence said that an 81-year-old was eight times more likely to attend church than a 21-year-old and the future needed addressing at a synod meeting available on podcast.