Christianity is the most popular religion in the world with over 2 billion adherents. 42 million Britons see themselves as nominally Christian, and there are 6 million who are actively practising. Christians believe that Jesus was the Messiah promised in the Old Testament. Christians believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Christians believe that God sent his Son to earth to save humanity from the consequences of its sins. One of the most important concepts in Christianity is that of Jesus giving his life on the Cross (the Crucifixion) and rising from the dead on the third day (the Resurrection).
Christians believe that there is only one God, but that there are three elements to this one God:
God the father
God the son
God the holy spirit
Christians worship in churches; their leaders are known as priests or ministers. The Christian holy book is the Bible, and consists of the Old and New Testaments. Christian holy days such as Easter and Christmas are important milestones in the Western secular calendar.
Christians believe in justification by faith - that through their belief in Jesus as the Son of God, and in his death and resurrection, they can have a right relationship with God whose forgiveness was made once and for all through the death of Jesus Christ. Christians believe that there is a life after earthly death.
While the actual nature of this life is not known, Christians believe that many spiritual experiences in this life help to give them some idea of what eternal life will be like.
These days, the word saint is most commonly used to refer to a Christian who has lived a particularly good and holy life on earth, and with whom miracles are claimed to have been associated after their death.
The formal title of Saint is conferred by the Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches through a process called canonisation.
Members of these Churches also believe that Saints created in this way can intercede with God on behalf of people...