(The Christian Post) - A massive religious study showing that a large number of Americans are religiously unaffiliated caused pollsters to question whether America is heading down the same religious path as that of Europe – where people may consider themselves religious but don’t belong to any institution.
The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life study, based on more than 35,000 interviews, found that 16.1 percent of the U.S. population described themselves as unaffiliated – the group with the greatest net gain in members.
The unaffiliated category includes atheists and agnostics, but is mostly made up of respondents who said they were “nothing in particular” (12.1 percent).
Luis Lugo, director of the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, noted there was a “double pattern” in the unaffiliated category, where the group as a whole is growing as well as those who consider themselves religious but who are not affiliated with any religion.
“I think both of those things are really quite interesting,” Lugo commented.
More than a third of those unaffiliated said that although they have no particular religion, they at least find religion to be “somewhat” important to “very” important in their personal life.
“Let me underscore again one of the significant findings of the unaffiliated,” said Greg Smith, research fellow of the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. “A high percentage of them said religion is still important to them, about six percent of the American public as a whole.”
The U.S. Religious Landscape Survey estimates the United States is still 78 percent Christian, but is tethering on its reputation as a Protestant nation, at 51 percent and falling.
In future studies, Smith said the group will see if the United States is experiencing the religious “phenomenon” that is already quite common in Europe – “believing without belonging.”
“[For] many people in Europe, religion has become deinstitutionalized even though they still have certain religious beliefs,” Smith said. “So one key question is whether the rank of those who believe but do not belong to religious institutions is a trend that is expanding as we go forward.”
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It's official. The Catholic Knight is retired. I'm hanging up the helmet and passing the torch. There will be no more articles, no more commentaries, no more calls to action. THIS BLOG IS CLOSED. I've spent a very long time thinking about this, I believe the time has come, and is a bit overdue. I want to thank my readers for everything, but most especially for your encouragement and your willingness to go out there and fight the good fight. So, that being the case, I've spend the last several weeks looking for bloggers who are fairly active, and best represent something akin to the way I think and what I believe. I recommend the following blogs for my readers to bookmark and check on regularly. Pick one as your favourite, or pick them all. They are all great.....
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
America Goes The Way Of Europe
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: As the leaders of Canada, the United States and Mexico quietly negotiate the terms and conditions of the coming 'North American Union' (NAU), the people of the United States slowly display the same cultural trends as well. The late great United States is going the way of Europe, and it seems there is nothing we can do to stop it from happening....