Catholicism is likely to become the largest churchgoing denomination in Scotland, according to new projections.

Figures from the 2016 Scottish Church Census reveal that the Catholic Church and Church of Scotland make up 35 per cent of the church-going population, but that the Catholic proportion is expanding.

The report found 135,600 weekly Catholic Mass attenders compared to 136,910 attending Church of Scotland services. The figures showed a total of 389,510 weekly attenders of churches of any denomination.

Peter Brierley, who conducted the study, told the Scottish Catholic Observer that the Church will have the largest number of Sunday churchgoers if the current trend continues.

He said: “The Catholic Mass-attending population has dropped… If you look at Glasgow it was 48,000 in 2002; it’s now 38,570… The numbers have gone down, but not as much as in other populations.”

Only nine per cent of the Scottish population are now churchgoers. The Church of Scotland and Scottish Episcopal Church have the highest rate of falling attendees. In the past 30 years, the number of Christians who attend church has halved.

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