pew religious landscape survey (1)
Well, last month I mentioned the release of the U.S. Religious Landscape Survey released by one of the Washington DC's Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. It's one of the most extensive of its kind in long time—they did in-depth interviews with 35,000 people. The initial report is 138 pages.
Because I've only been having short periods of time to look through it (the entire report is available online, but I actually killed some trees so I could mark it up), I've decided to start dropping in quotes and numbers as I find them interesting.
"Constant movement characterizes the American religious marketplace as every major religious group is simultaneously gaining and losing adherents. Those that are growing as a result of religious change are simply gaining new members at a faster rate than they are losing members." (p7)
"constant movement" sounds right.
Interesting they chose to use the marketplace metaphor.
"Despite predictions that the United States would follow Europe's path toward widespread secularization, the US population remains highly religious in its beliefs and practices..." (p1)
I wonder - is this still coming? How many years do we tend to lag behind them culturally? Or are there factors that really make us very different?
"People moving into the 'unaffiliated' category outnumber those moving out of 'unaffiliated' group by more than a three-to-one margin." (p7)