VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – If you drive past a church this April 21, you may notice it’s busier than usual since it’s Easter Sunday.
Church attendance typically spikes on Easter, but are Catholics still coming out in the same numbers as years past? Vancouver Archbishop Michael Miller says yes.
“I bet it goes up 20 per cent,” he says. “Some churches that have very, very large numbers of people, they add extra masses even in gymnasiums.”
And St. Mary’s, in East Vancouver, is among the busiest. “Saturday evening right through to Sunday evening there might be 7,000, and that’s just one church,” Miller says.
While the sex abuse scandal has been a stain for Catholics, Miller claims church attendance hasn’t suffered. He spoke with priests around the Archdiocese of Vancouver about Christmas, and none of them noticed a drop in attendance.
“No indication from our pastors that our church was half empty – there was no talk of that,” he says.