Monday, March 23

Interesting News on Religious Life in America

Interesting data from the Ivy Jungle Report:

Less Religious in America: A widely reported study by Trinity College (Connecticut) shows the US becoming less religious with 15% of Americans reporting no religious affiliation. Those without religion are the only group to have gained numbers in every state in the union. For the last 20 years, the percentage of Americans who consider themselves Christians has continued to drop. Denominational affiliation has taken an even greater hit. Now more than 8 million Christians claim to be non-denominational; up from 194,000 in 1990. The decline of religion can also be seen in the fact that 27% of the interviewees did not expect to have a religious funeral and 30% said their wedding was not a religious service. ( March 12, 2009)

Creating Their Own Religion: A recent Barna update shows that Americans are more likely to create their own religious beliefs than follow an established set of beliefs from a church or denomination. By a margin of 3 to 1, (76% to 24%) respondents said they choose from a blend of ideas to describe their faith. This often leads to contradictory positions. 82% of those under 25 take this approach. Among "born again" Christians, 61% say they do so. (Barna Update 1/26/2009 quoted in Mission America Update February 2009)

Paths to Eternal Life: 65% of all Christians say there are multiple paths to eternal life. According to the Pew forum survey, a majority of Christians believe other religions such as Judaism, Islam, or no religion at all can lead to salvation. (Christian Post December 08 quoted in Mission America Update February 2009)

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