Chart of America's Confidence in Religion
Source: Gallup

According to a survey by Gallup, Americans are losing confidence in most religions.

A new survey by Gallup paints a worrying figure for leaders of various organized religion groups with the church being adversely affected. The survey sought to find out the percentage of Americans who had a great deal of/quite a lot of confidence in the Church or organized religion. The figures obtained showed the confidence levels amongst Americans in the Church and organized religion had reached an all-time low with only 42% of Americans having such confidence in the Church or organized religion. This is in stark contrast to the state of affairs in the 70’s when 7 out of 10 individuals said they had a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the Church or organized religion.

Figures from the data analysis show that lack of confidence in the church and organized religion is especially high among the non-religious people (Americans who do not identify with any religion) and the non-Christians. A research by Pew Research center earlier in the year found the number of people who did not identify with any religion to be 23% and it is less likely that they will have much or any confidence in the church or organized religion. When the group is combined with non-Christians in the Gallup survey, only 10% of them said they have a great deal of or quite a lot of confidence in the Church or organized religion.

The other interesting statistic is the erosion of confidence in the church and organized religion amongst the Protestant and Catholic communities. 51% of the Protestants had a great deal of or quite a lot of confidence in the Church or organized religion. This is the same number as Catholics who had a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the Church marking the first time the figures have been equal for both categories. This shows the Protestant church has suffered more while the Catholic community has benefited from a steady rise and the number has stabilized at above 50% for two years a factor that has been credited to the popularity of Pope Francis.

The implication of these findings is that the church and organized religion continues to lose ground as a center of moral leadership and falls behind the military, small business and the police among the 15 institutions that were surveyed. Leaders’ scandals and the child abuse cases that rocked the church have immensely contributed to this loss of public confidence.

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