Is Christianity Growing In Kerala

Religious demographics in Kerala

Kerala is a state of India, popularly known as ‘God’s own country’. It has a status of being almost one of the least religious and most progressive societies in India. According to the 2011 census, Hindus constitute the majority of the population in Kerala followed by Christians, Muslims and other religious minorities. It has a significant Christian population, more than 28.7% according to the 2011 census.

Christianity origins in Kerala

Christianity is one of the oldest religions in Kerala. Its origin dates back to the India’s first independent Christian denomination, the Church of the East, commonly known as the Malankara Church that was founded by Thomas the Apostle in 1st Century AD. It spread through Kerala in the subsequent centuries, with the arrival of their Prelates, known as ‘Cariam Thirumenis’, in 1653 and 1751 respectively, to take care of the indigenous Kerala Church.

Decline in population

In recent years, the Christians in Kerala have been facing a decline in population due to migration and conversion. According to the 2011 census, the population of Christians had declined by 3.2% from the previous census of 2001. This decline has been attributed to various factors such as family planning and migration.

Growth of Pentecostal movements

Despite this decline in population, Christianity in Kerala is showing some signs of growth. This growth is mainly attributed to the emergence of Pentecostal movements in Kerala. These movements are largely driven by the younger generation, who feel a need for a more dynamic, deeper spiritual experience within the Christian faith. They are also appealing to the younger generation, as it provides them with an outlet for their frustrations and anxieties.

Growth of Christian institutions

Apart from Pentecostal movements, there is also evidence of growth in Christian institutions in the state. Churches, which have been around since the time of Thomas the Apostle, are growing steadily. Moreover, new institutions such as seminaries, Christian universities and centers to promote Bible-based education are being established throughout the state.

Influence of Christian media

Christian media has been another important factor in driving the growth of Christianity in Kerala. Christian channels such as CHARISMA, TBN, GOD TV and numerous Christian periodicals are popular among the people. These media outlets have been used to spread the message of Christianity, which has led to an increase in awareness and understanding of the Christian faith in Kerala.

Role of Christian leaders

The growth of Christianity in Kerala can also be attributed to the leadership of Christian leaders in the state. They have been playing a major role in promoting the Christian faith and have been active in organizing conferences and seminars to spread awareness about the religion and help people to become familiar with Christian values and teachings.

Support of Christian community

The success of Christianity in Kerala also owes much to the support of the Christian community. They have been actively involved in organizing events and providing funds for projects that promote the Christian faith. Moreover, they have been at the forefront of helping the weaker sections of society by providing them with basic amenities such as food, medical aid and education.

Support of political parties

In the recent years, there has been a rise in the number of Christian political leaders who are making their presence felt in the state. Political parties in the state have been vocal in their support for the Christian community and this has resulted in growth in the number of Christian MLAs and MPs in the state.

Social and cultural acceptance

Christianity in Kerala is also aided by the social and cultural acceptance of the religion. Christians have been a part of the state for centuries and are well accepted by the Hindus, Muslims and other religious minorities. They are comfortable in participating in cultural activities and festivals, which has made the process of social integration easier.

Role of technology

The role of technology in the growth of Christianity in Kerala cannot be undermined. Apps, YouTube channels and websites are providing Christian messages to a wider audience and helping to create awareness about the Christian faith. Moreover, technology is also helping to foster Christian fellowship and enabling Christians to engage more deeply with the faith.

Faith-based tourism

Faith-based tourism has also been an important factor in the growth of Christianity in the state. Tourists visit places such as the parishes of St Thomas and Mukkolakkal and Marian shrines like the Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes at Puthenkurishu to pay homage to the Christian faith. This has resulted in increased awareness and understanding of Christianity among people.

Economic opportunities

Finally, it is important to mention the role of the economy in the growth of Christianity in Kerala. The state’s Christian community has been able to benefit from the development of the economy, which has provided them with better educational and employment opportunities. This, in turn, has given them more freedom to express and practice their faith.


All in all, it is clear that Christianity is growing in Kerala despite a decline in population. This growth can be attributed to the emergence of Pentecostal movements and Christian institutions, as well as support from political parties, Christian leaders and Christian community. Moreover, technology and faith-based tourism have also been key in making the religion more accessible and creating awareness about Christianity. Finally, economic opportunities provided by Kerala’s thriving economy have enabled Christians to express and practice their faith.

Jennifer Johnson is an experienced author with a deep passion for exploring the spiritual traditions of different cultures and religions. She has been writing about religion and spirituality for the past ten years in both print and digital platforms, engaging readers in meaningful dialogue about the soul's journey through this life. With degrees in Comparative Religion and English Literature, she brings an insightful perspective to her work that bridges the gap between traditional knowledge and modern theories. A lifelong traveler, Jenn has lived in multiple countries exploring various paths to understanding faith, and her dedication to learning new things is palpable in every piece she creates.

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