Jul
1

Canada Day and a Glimpse at Canada’s Metro Contexts

written by JD

In light of the fact that today is Canada Day, I am interrupting the two-part series that I just started on church planting models.  July 1 is the day when Canadians celebrate the birth of their country.  While thinking of our northern neighbor, I decided to take a moment to share with your some sobering evangelical statistics and some helpful links to assist you in your labors in Canada.  Portions of this post were originally written in a January post. 

Determining evangelical numbers in Canada is a challenging process.  Rick Hiemstra with the Centre for Research on Canadian Evangelicalism has written on this topic.  You can find his articles HEREHERE, HERE, and HERE.

Patrick Johnstone and Jason Mandryk in Operation World: 21st Century Edition notes that Evangelicals comprised 10.8% of the Canadian population in 2000 (updated and revised edition, 2005, pg 144).  I recently received an email from Hiemstra, estimating the average evangelical percentage across the provinces being 12%, with Quebec consisting of 2-3%.

Below is a table that provides a glimpse at certain Canadian urban contexts and their evangelical church to population ratios.  If you are interested in the full report and presentation, you can find it HERE and HERE  (a special word of appreciation goes to Outreach Canada for providing the data for the following table).

Selected Canadian Metro Areas With Evangelical Church to Pop. Ratios

METRO AREA PROVINCE EVANGELICAL CHURCH TO POPULATION RATIO
Quebec City Quebec 1:23,331
Saguenay Quebec 1:21,733
Trois-Rivieres Quebec 1:9508
Montreal Quebec 1:8688
Sherbrooke Quebec 1:8668
St. John’s Newfoundland 1:6718
Ottawa-Gatineau Ontario 1:6129
Oshawa Ontario 1:5381
Toronto Ontario 1:5229
Great Sudbury Ontario 1:4764
Calgary Alberta 1:3818
Windsor Ontario 1:3773
Victoria British Columbia 1:3674
Hamilton Ontario 1:3654
Kingston Ontario 1:3604
Halifax Nova Scotia 1:3539
Edmonton Alberta 1:3420
London Ontario 1:3351
Vancouver British Columbia 1:3269
Thunder Bay Ontario 1:3214
Winnipeg Manitoba 1:3169
Regina Saskatchewan 1:3148
St. Catherine’s-Niagara Ontario 1:2390
Saskatoon Saskatchewan 1:2331
St. John New Brunswick 1:2099

I have had the privilege to travel throughout Newfoundland, the Maritimes, Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia, and visit some of these locations.  There is truly a great need for the gospel in Canada. 

I have included the following resources to assist you in getting started in better understanding Canada and serving the people there:

Map of Canada.  Helpful map of Canada containing links to important sites related to provinces, territories, and cities.

Epodunk Canada.  Excellent resource. Search-able site that provides community profiles throughout Canada.

CBC.ca.  Homepage for Canada’s news

Church Map Canada.  Excellent resource by Outreach Canada. This site provides a national and province by province look at churches compared to population as well as information about churches in given cities.

Outreach Canada.  Outreach Canada is a Christian ministry specializing in church research, growth and planting, demographics, missions mobilization and transitional ministry resources.

Statistics Canada.  Canada’s national statistic agency.

Stats Canada Documents. Here are several links to some very helpful documents on Canada.

Dene people.  Paper on this First Nations people group.

Inuit of Nunavut.  Paper on this First Nations people group living in Nunavut

Maritime Provinces.  Paper on the history and culture of the Maritimes.

Podcast to download:  “1 in 5 Foreign Born Says Stats Canada”

Podcast to download: “Challenges Across Canada”

Podcast to download: “Realities from the Gaspe”

While I am greatly thankful for the freedom that is known in Canada, it is my hope and prayer that all Canadians would know what true freedom is: 

“So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, ‘If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’  They answered him, ‘We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, “You will become free”?’

Jesus answered them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed'” (John 8:31-36, ESV).

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