“With our rituals, there’s never any murder, there’s never any sacrifice, there’s never any blood rites to Satan. We don’t worship the devil. We don’t cast magic spells…”
In fact, as the Global Order of Satan UK – as well as other leaders and members of Satanic groups around the world insist – it would be difficult to spot a Satanist walking down the street.
Yet while the macabre occult rituals, virgin sacrifices, chalices of blood, and belief in the actual Devil are a thing of the past, Satanism is luring increasing numbers of young people disillusioned with “outdated” and “dogmatic” traditional religions to join its fold by offering an “alternative” to “stuffy”, traditional faiths.
The Sunday Telegraph has spoken to leaders and members of Satanic groups around the world who claim that the opportunities Satanism offers people to engage in activism and campaign on issues such as gender and sexuality is part of the appeal for the younger members, particularly those who are increasingly less likely to declare themselves as Christian.
Chaplain Leopold, a 32-year-old London-based undertaker, co-runs the Global Order of Satan UK which he said has seen a 200 percent increase in membership over the last five years.
He said two factors were responsible: the decreasing popularity of “traditional dogmatic religions”, and “a movement towards self-identification and self-realization”.
“This is particularly amongst younger people who don’t want to be identified as part of a prescriptive dogmatic religion and rather want to identify as their own self-beliefs and self-realization – which is what Satanism offers. So we often say that we’re sort of the religion for those who don’t like the oppression of previous religions.”
Chaplain Leopold added that many young people are “turning away from what is now incredibly outdated, very obviously stuffy views that are completely not in keeping with modern times” – particularly regarding issues such as sexuality and gender identity.
His comments come as Christianity battles to appeal to younger generations and remain divided on the issue of gay marriage, with bishops preparing for a historic vote on the matter next month.
According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) census, published in November, the number of people in England and Wales identifying as Satanists saw a 167 percent increase between 2011 and 2021, up from 1,893 to 5,054.
At the same time, the number of Christians dropped so low that they now account for less than half of England and Wales’ population for the first time in census history.
The census data prompted the Archbishop of York to insist that Christianity is not in “terminal decline” and that Jesus suffered setbacks, so Christians will too. The figures revealed that 46.2 percent of the population (27.5 million people) described themselves as “Christian” in 2021, marking a 13.1 percentage point decrease from 59.3 percent (33.3 million people) in 2011. (SOURCE)