Even after a century of Christian expansion worldwide, Europe still matters immensely in the map of the faith. According to the World Christian Database, Europe—including Russia—has 580 million Christian believers, which is more than a quarter of the global total.
Though few of them realize it yet, a great many of these Christians are about to experience a far-reaching change in their legal, political and cultural environment. Europeans who have long been familiar with established churches are soon going to find themselves living with a U.S.-style separation of church and state, enforced by powerful secular-minded courts.
Philip Jenkins is professor of history at Baylor University's Institute for Studies of Religion and author of The Great and Holy War: How World War I Became a Religious Crusade and The Many Faces of Christ: The Thousand-Year Story of the Survival and Influence of the Lost Gospels.