Five Religious Predictions for 2011

I’ll be on Doug Pagitt Radio tomorrow (Sunday, December 19), going over my predictions for the year in religion from last year, recapping the big stories, and making my predictions for next year.

You can read my Five Predictions for 2010,

  1. Political correctness toward Islam will decrease
  2. The pope will not say or do anything particularly controversial
  3. Universalism will become a hot topic among evangelicals
  4. Rick Warren’s influence will wane and new evangelical leaders will emerge
  5. A handful of evangelical leaders will come out in support of GLBT marriage/ordination

And here are the top ten religion stories for 2010, according to the Religion News Service:

  1. NYC mosque
  2. Religious response to the Haiti earthquake
  3. Catholic clergy sex abuse and cover-up
  4. Rise of the Tea Party
  5. Obama health care bill
  6. Denominational debates on GLBT issues
  7. Bankruptcy of the Crystal Cathedral
  8. Gay teen suicides
  9. Pew Forum survey showing atheists know more about Christianity than Christians
  10. No Protestant on the Supreme Court

So, how did I do?

What you you think is in store for 2011 in religious news? Help me make my list, and be sure to listen in tomorrow!

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  • I think it’s safe to bet there will be a huge Ecangelical support of isreal to kick up a war with Iran.

    Also, DADT repeal and continuing emphasis on gay teen suicides will stir a fierce kickback reaction among tea partiers (with even more shocking anti gay rhetoric), but new evangelical leaders will continue to come out in support of rights

  • John Edmonds

    1. The PC for Islam has been decreasing since 9/11 and continues with every “Allah akbar” attacker.
    2.The Pope and the prophylactic device.
    3. Universalism as a hot topic can probably go back to Jonathan Edwards.
    4.Who’s the new Evangelical leader? (Not presuming that Warren every really was the one.)
    5. Who’s the handful of GLBT/LGBT Evangelical supporters?

  • You did pretty good, I think. I think universalism is still gaining ground and will continue to take new forms and spark new dialogue in 2011. My predictions are:

    1.) There will be a larger backlash against megachurches.
    2.) There will be prominent Christians announcing dialogue and solidarity with Muslims during Ramadan.
    3.) There will be a further differentiation between evangelicalism and emerging theology as emerging theology continues to develop.
    4.) Many mainline churches will announce attendance crises.
    5.) Religious liberals will turn on Obama.

  • Coren Blumet

    1. Christopher Hitchens will die.
    2. Most Churches across the US will still struggle financially because of the recession.
    3. There will be a renewed interest in Christian apocalyptic literature.
    4. Transexuals will dominate GLBT Christian issues.
    5. The Euro will disappear and a renewed interest in Christianity will be found across Europe.

  • Annie

    I do think the Pope’s statements on condoms use and AIDs prevention was pretty damn significant, even if most news organizations didn’t really understand how to interpret that significance. So on that count, I’d say your wrong. What the pope says may not be important to some but it matters a whole lot to the billion or so Catholics on the planet.

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  • Scot McKnight

    Tony, universalism will become big this Spring when Rob Bell’s book, which will probe that issue, is published.