Purdue University

Why Christianity is Thriving in China Today


Fenggang Yang

September 9, 2010



On September 9th, Professor Fenggang Yang delivered a lecture entitled, “Why Christianity Is Thriving in China Today: A Sociological Perspective.” In the lecture, Professor Yang stated that the Chinese government policy on Christianity has changed through four main stages: “suppression” (1949-1966), “eradication” (1966-1979), “controlling to weaken” (1979-1995), and “controlling to contain” (1995-2010). Despite religious regulation, there are now about 33.5 million selfidentified Christians in China, according to the 2007 Chinese Spiritual Life Survey. Also, some new Christian groups have gradually emerged in Chinese society, including the socalled cultural Christians, boss Christians, transnational Christians, Christian lawyers, and Christian artists.

Professor Yang proposed that the fundamental reason for Christianity’s growth in China is its compatibility with modernity. In other words, Christian beliefs, rituals, and organizations can better meet the social needs during the modernization process. He projected that Christianity will continue to thrive in China in the foreseeable future.


Fenggang Yang Lecturing Lecturing Audience Audience
Audience Audience Audience Q & A Q & A
Audience Slide (1) Slide (2) Slide (3) Slide (4)
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