Americans are losing their faith in religion.

Matthew C. Woodruff
Mostly Empty Church(Shutterstock)

Your grandparents and probably even your parents were people of faith. In the early 1990s, roughly 90% of Americans said they were Christians. As little as 12 years ago, 77% 0f American adults described themselves as Christian. In 2019, just three years ago, 65% were holding on to their faith and Christian identity.

A newly released Pew Research Center report concludes If this trend continues, in 50 years, barely half of Americans will identify as Christian.

The report finds that 29% of U.S. adults now say they have no religious affiliation. 32% of those polled by the Pew Research from May 29 to Aug. 25 said they seldom or never pray. According to a study published in November that was led by the Hartford Institute for Religion Research, in-person church attendance has dropped by 12% in the last year and a half, continuing the sharp decline from Covid.

The fastest growing group? Those who believe nothing at all, religiously speaking, now at 30%, according to Pew.

As this older generation of faith passes on, and because Christians now skew older and the nonreligious skew younger, the Pew Research report concludes that, only 54% of Americans will be Christian in 50 years.

Why is faith in religious belief dropping at such an astounding rate, here and in Europe and Latin America? In the report, some identify scientific discoveries, like evolution or the big bang theory (not the TV show), as reasons why they no longer believe. Others dislike organized religion and cite “Christians doing unChristian things” (Christian hypocrisy) as their reason why. The clergy sex abuse scandal, prosperity preachers, and many religious leaders’ anti-gay rhetoric are frequently cited as reasons younger persons no longer wish to be affiliated with religion.

Even as the search to answer life’s hardest questions will always be central to people, they are no longer looking to organized religion for the answers. Instead many are approaching their connection to God from a more spiritual place than through the vehicle of religion.

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Matthew is a free-lance journalist, and an internationally award-winning author best known for Dark Humor/Lite Horror/Supernatural short stories, as well as an ordained minister who served as a domestic missionary. He is a lover of the unusual, travel, cats and the spark that makes people tick. Matthew is based in Florida, USA.

Gainesville, FL

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