CLOSE your eyes and think of Christianity in Britain: especially if you don't have much contact with the real thing, images of village fetes, ancient stone chapels and settled communities in genteel but unnoticeably slow decline may still come to mind. They fit in with a certain rose-tinted vision of Britain itself, to which Britons and Anglophiles cling, even though they know perfectly well that far more people live within sight and earshot of a motorway than in cottages surrounded by tweeting songbirds. You may have noticed that the latest edition of The Economist, in one of its cover illustrations, teasingly inserts an image of an archbishop in a green and pleasant but fissiparous English landscape.
Economist. 20 February 2015