New evidence that Americans are turning their backs on religion, and this is increasingly true of those who grew up in religious homes. From the Huffington Post:
The Catholic Church may have just elected a new pope, but if a recent study is any indication, fewer Americans than ever may care.
The study, entitled “More Americans Have No Religious Preference” and released by sociologists at U.C. Berkeley and Duke University, found that in 2012, one in five Americans reported no religious affiliation — an all-time high.
The study notes that the trend of people stating no religious preference has been growing since the General Social Survey began asking about it in the early 1970s, when only five percent of people said they had no religion. However, the irreligious category has expanded rapidly over the past two decades. In 1990, only eight percent of respondents said they were not religious, compared to 20 percent when the study was conducted last year.
While not claiming a religion is an expanding trend across all of the demographics measured in the study, there were some significant differences between groups. Men are less religious than women; whites are less religious than African or Mexican Americans; liberals are less religious than conservatives; people in the West and Northeast are less religious than Southerners or Midwesterners; young people are less religious than older ones.
An indicator of just how quickly religion is declining? While 20 percent of respondents claimed no religion, only eight percent said they were raised without one.
I’m especially troubled by the evidence showing that so many who grew up in church have lost their religion as adults.What can we do to embrace our children in the love of Christ, and give them a rock-solid foundation in the faith– a foundation that will carry them into adulthood? What can the Episcopal church do to draw the attention and interest of people who grew up in church but are not seeking God there now? What is your congregation doing to ensure that your children will continue to feel at home in the church once they’re on their own?