Sunday, March 01, 2009

Fewer Americans in Church, Especially Men

. . . America continues to grow in terms of population, but the percentage of Americans attending church on any given weekend keeps declining. In 1990, it was 20.4 percent. In 2000, it was 18.7. In 2007, it was 17.

George H. Gallup, Jr. wrote . . . "A mountain of Gallup survey data attests to the idea that women are more religious than men, hold their beliefs more firmly, practice their faith more consistently, and work more vigorously for the congregation."

-- From "Study finds attendance at churches still falling" by G. Jeffrey MacDonald, Religion News Service 2/28/09

Booming megachurches might grab headlines, but the bigger story of American congregations is one of accelerating decline, according to David T. Olson, the director of the American Church Research Project. Based on data collected from more than 200,000 churches, he projects that by 2050, only 10 percent of Americans will be in church on any given Sunday.

"Since 2001 especially, mainline and Catholic churches have been experiencing severe decline. They are declining much faster than they were in the 1990s. Evangelicals are still growing numerically, but that numeric growth is not keeping up with population growth.

"From 1990 to 2006, there were 68 million new births in America and a net gain of 23 million immigrants, but churches a lot of times are really not looking outside their doors to think about how to connect with those new Americans.

"Christians are increasingly cocooned and live in environments where they may not know many people who are not Christians."

To read the entire article (above), CLICK HERE.

From "Women More Religious Than Men" by Robert Roy Britt, Editorial Director, Live Science 2/28/09

A new analysis of survey data finds women pray more often then men, are more likely to believe in God, and are more religious than men in a variety of other ways.

The percent of women (and then men) who:
  • Are affiliated with a religion: 86 (79).
  • Have absolutely certain belief in a God or universal spirit: 77 (65).
  • Pray at least daily: 66 (49).
  • Have absolutely certain belief in a personal God: 58 (45).
The survey involved interviews with more than 35,000 U.S. adults by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

The latest findings, released Friday, are no surprise, only confirming what other studies have found for decades.

To read the entire article (above), CLICK HERE.