The study findings point to American religion as having one of the world’s biggest economic turnovers annually.
If America's religious scene could be turned into one big corporation, it would be one of the world's largest business organizations. Worth more than $1.2 trillion to the American Economy, America's religious scene seems to be a larger deal in terms of money than it we would otherwise think!
The figures are large enough to make America's religious sector the 15th largest national economy in the world. In terms of national value, that would put it ahead of around 118 other countries. This amazing discovery came to light after a study conducted by Brian Grim from Georgetown University.
Another interesting fact that emerged from the study is that the figures are enough to make American religion a larger economic entity than even companies like Apple, Google, Amazon and other tech companies. In fact, the revenues of American religion also makes it about 50% larger than the annual revenues of six of the largest oil companies in America.
This study by researcher Brian Grim happens to be the first of its kind to have been undertaken. Titled “The Socio-economic Contribution of Religion to American Society: An Empirical Analysis,” this study brings to light the startling facts associated with religion that Americans would have otherwise not known. Grim drew up his conclusions after carefully studying a population of 344,000 religious communities and congregations in America and analyzing their economic impact on the nation. The study has taken into consideration the economic activities of religious organizations of various communities in America including Christianity and its denominations, Judaism, Islam and others. The trend found indicates that economic activities have tripled in these 15 years.
That study analyzed organizations and institutions run by various religions. These include schools, hospitals, public soup-kitchens, addiction programs and even houses of worship. Every aspect that involved money was considered- from employment to the buying of candles, flowers and other paraphernalia.
Speaking about his work, Grim said believes that his study is the first attempt to actually quantify the activities of all religions combined, monetarily. He says that this is important because it shows a contradiction to the common belief that religion is not as relevant in America. Echoing a similar thought, Kerry Troup, the spokeswoman for Faith Counts, says that the study results reflect the importance of religion in the lives of Americans. She added that while a number of factors bring together the people of various communities, this study again validates the fact the religion is a cornerstone of American society.
A summary of the study can be found here.
- Christian Today
- Religion News Service
- “The Socio-economic Contribution of Religion to American Society: An Empirical Analysis”
- Summary Sheet