Faith in the U.S.: Is God a goner?
#1


From the Vatican Insider:



The results of a Gallup survey show how big events and trends shape collective opinions on faith

Marco Tosatti
Rome


The motto printed on U.S. dollar bills may read “In God we trust” but over three-quarters of Americans (77%) say religion no longer has as big an influence in their lives as it did for their parents or grandparents.

The Gallup survey shows the lowest confidence in organised religion in 40 years. A similar percentage of people think this loss of faith is not positive for the country. 75% of Americans interviewed, say they think it would be positive for American society if more Americans were religious. Gallup’s editor-in-chief, Frank Newport, said that most Americans did not see it as a positive thing. "It may be happening, but Americans don't like it," he said.

The Gallup survey was based on telephone interviews conducted between 2 and 7 May 2013. It was conducted on a random sample of 1,535 adults. The margin of sampling error is ±3 percentage points according to Gallup, which added that “Americans were more likely to say religion was increasing rather than decreasing its influence when the question was first asked in 1957.”

The peak in views that religion was losing its influence measured in 1969 and 1970, when at least 60% of Americans thought religion was losing its influence. The picture looked similar between 1991 and 1994 and from 2007 to the present day.

Americans perceived religious values were increasing in importance in American society in 1957, 1962 and at some points during the Reagan administration in the 1980s. This feeling peaked – and reached a historical high - after the 9/11 attack on the Twin Towers and the World Trade Centre in New York. Unfortunately the survey did not look further into the circumstances that led to these opinions on the influence of faith during the above mentioned time periods and how this altered over time.

Vox Wrote:Fickle. It's so strange to me how people's religiosity can be so influenced by external events. The buildings fall down, so I'm religious. Life's going great now, so who needs God? I just don't get it...

According to Gallup, the results are strongly and directly link to the personal religiosity of the individuals interviewed. More than 90% of interviewees who said they are regular church goers, believe that if more Americans were religious that would be a positive thing. This percentage drops to 58% among interviewees who attend church less often.

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#2
Love it.  Just love it. 

Now, it's just a short matter of time until the shoe falls, and the country gets to reap what it's sown.  Too bad I live in the middle of it.  But whaddya gonna do?
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#3
I was pondering this question today: can religion survive in a secularized culture?  The problem with anti-clericalism seems to be that it takes the religious part of culture out of society, even though a common religious belief of any kind is one quality of a culture.

If a state religion is secularized or atheist, then the members of the state culture who have a system of belief which guides their life choices to at least some degree will always be outside of the norm for that culture.  Likewise, a moralist or pluralist attitude will keep atheists and agnostics outside of the norm.
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#4
While this doesn't have much to do with the Gallup poll, it doesn't help any when hospitals remove their crucifixes from their chapels, and try to make them "all inclusive."
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