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Quote of the Day: Americans Increasingly Indifferent Towards Christianity

The United States is becoming a less Christian country, and the decline in religious affiliation is particularly rapid among younger Americans, new figures show.

The proportion of US adults who describe themselves as Christian has fallen to two-thirds, a drop of 12 percentage points over the past decade, according to data from the Pew Research Center.

Over the same period, the proportion of those describing themselves as atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular” has risen by 17 percentage points to more than a quarter of the adult population.

Although churches and faith movements continue to exert strong political influence on the Trump administration and at the state level, the proportion of American adults attending religious services has declined.

The proportion of US adults who are white born-again or evangelical Protestants – the religious group which strives hardest to see its political agenda adopted – is now 16%, down from 19% a decade ago.

The number going to church at least once or twice a month has fallen by seven percentage points over the past decade. More Americans now say they attend religious services a few times a year or less (54%) than say they attend at least monthly (45%).

The fall in religious identification and activity has affected both Protestant and Roman Catholic churches. According to Pew, 43% of adults identify with Protestantism, down from 51% in 2009. And 20% are Catholic, down from 23% in 2009.

Fewer than half of millennials (49%) describe themselves as Christians; four in 10 are religious “nones”, and 9% identify with non-Christian faiths.

As many millennials say they never attend religious services (22%) as those who say they go at least once a week.

Pew’s report, released on Thursday, says the decline of Christian communities is continuing at a rapid pace.

Religious ‘nones’ have grown across multiple demographic groups: white people, black people and Hispanics; men and women; all regions of the country; and among college graduates and those with lower levels of educational attainment.

“Religious ‘nones’ are growing faster among Democrats than Republicans, though their ranks are swelling in both partisan coalitions. And although the religiously unaffiliated are on the rise among younger people and most groups of older adults, their growth is most pronounced among young adults,” the report said.

— The Guardian, Americans Becoming Less Christian as Over a Quarter Follow no Religion, October 17, 2019


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    I am not at all surprised. Christianity in this country, has tied itself ever closer to regressive politics since the 1970’s, but especially so in the last 30 years. A considerable swath of Christians can be defined by what they’re against in American life, not by their efforts to follow the teachings of Jesus. They may not be the majority of Christians, but they are certainly the loudest of them. I can’t blame young people–or older ones–for not wanting to associate with a church that is loudly against LGBTQ people, people of color, liberals, science, evolution, and the equality of women–especially when they advocate enshrining their hatreds in US law. Many, perhaps most, people have become more liberal over time, and there is no place for them in such churches. They have, rightly, left them behind.

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    My friends who are liberal Christians hate being categorized with the bigoted right-wing elements of their religion, but even though they are socially engaged helping out people in their communities, they aren’t as vocal as their evangelical counterparts. In the US, I think the 2016 election showed who and what evangelicals really stand for in a way that is undeniable, and it has turned a lot of people off. Religion has been declining on it’s own due to a variety of factors, but the 2016 election gave it a surge. Conversely, the evangelicals have experienced a surge in acting out as much as they want to in an effort to power-grab as much as possible. They have carte blanche under this administration, and they’re taking advantage of that.

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    dale m.

    Right on the nail Obstacle Chick! Well summed up. Trump in later years may well B seen as our unlikely hero. U would think he was doing this on purpose. I wonder if they’re still pushing to create a gospel 4 him in the Bible? The gospel of Trump. Hope they succeed. It is after all their book. It would show how very, very man-made the book really is. I would support it!! It would surely B the killing blown. I would support them if they wanted Trump to become the incarnation of Christ himself. Who would this help? The millennials. Already, 49% of adult millennials R non-religious! This is the pillow that Bruce talked about so much. He and he alone, should have that honour! I could see him doing it with a jolly “HO! HO!HO! Bruce …. I’m telling U …. U should advocate this back 2 the evangelical masses.

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Bruce Gerencser