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In this week’s Catholic Herald, Professor Philip Jenkins, distinguished professor of history at the Institute for Studies of Religion at Baylor University, Texas and author of The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity, challenges the perception that the Catholic Church is shrinking across the world arguing that such claims are laughable.

When we look to countries such as Ireland which were once very Catholic and now seem shattered by the abuse scandal, Professor Jenkins’ argument comes as a surprise. I decided to telephone him and find out more:

1:00: Why do so many people assume the Catholic Church is shrinking?

2:05: Twice ad ms many Catholics across the world since 1970?

4:00: The amazing case of Africa

7:00: The role of Islam in the growth of Catholicism

8:00: The secularisation of France

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