by Michael Snyder, End Of The American Dream:
The decline of the Christian faith in the United States continues to accelerate, and the latest numbers that we just got are absolutely staggering. Most European countries are already considered to be “post-Christian” nations, and the U.S. appears to be headed down the exact same path. But when America was originally founded, it is estimated that 98 percent of the colonists were Christians. The Christian faith played a critical role in the development of our form of government, and down throughout history every generation of Americans was overwhelmingly Christian. But now things are changing in a major way. According to a brand new survey that was just released by the Pew Research Center, only 65 percent of Americans now consider themselves to be “Christians”, and that represents the lowest level ever recorded…
The religious landscape of the United States continues to change at a rapid clip. In Pew Research Center telephone surveys conducted in 2018 and 2019, 65% of American adults describe themselves as Christians when asked about their religion, down 12 percentage points over the past decade. Meanwhile, the religiously unaffiliated share of the population, consisting of people who describe their religious identity as atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular,” now stands at 26%, up from 17% in 2009.
When it comes to religion, a 12 percent drop in a single decade is not just a decline.
In reality, it is a mass exodus.
As a Christian, this alarms me greatly. Year after year we have seen a steady decline in the percentage of Americans that consider themselves to be Christians, and this has been helping to fuel the rapid growth of the “nones”…
Meanwhile, all subsets of the religiously unaffiliated population – a group also known as religious “nones” – have seen their numbers swell. Self-described atheists now account for 4% of U.S. adults, up modestly but significantly from 2% in 2009; agnostics make up 5% of U.S. adults, up from 3% a decade ago; and 17% of Americans now describe their religion as “nothing in particular,” up from 12% in 2009. Members of non-Christian religions also have grown modestly as a share of the adult population.
The Pew Research survey also showed that there is a tremendous generation gap when it comes to religious affiliation.
Older Americans still overwhelmingly identify with the Christian faith, but at this point less than half of all Millennials consider themselves to be Christians…
Furthermore, the data shows a wide gap between older Americans (Baby Boomers and members of the Silent Generation) and Millennials in their levels of religious affiliation and attendance. More than eight-in-ten members of the Silent Generation (those born between 1928 and 1945) describe themselves as Christians (84%), as do three-quarters of Baby Boomers (76%). In stark contrast, only half of Millennials (49%) describe themselves as Christians; four-in-ten are religious “nones,” and one-in-ten Millennials identify with non-Christian faiths.
The Millennials are the first generation in American history in which Christians are a minority.
Just think about that. We have never seen a religious shift of this magnitude, and it has tremendous implications for the future of our society.
The percentage of our young adults that are “nones” has nearly quadrupled since 1986. That is a mind blowing statistic, and it is one of the clearest indications that the left has been winning the culture war.
As a result of this mass exodus from the Christian faith, churches are closing down in droves all across the country.
In fact, it has been estimated that somewhere between 6,000 and 10,000 churches are shut down in the United States every single year, and that means that over 100 churches will die this week alone.
As a result, we have a whole lot of empty church buildings on our hands, and many of them are being converted into hotels, bars and indoor playgrounds…
A large number of abandoned churches have become wineries or breweries or bars. Others have been converted into hotels, bed-and-breakfasts, and Airbnbs. A few have been transformed into entertainment venues, such as an indoor playground for children, a laser-tag arena, or a skate park.
But just because the Christian faith is declining in America does not mean that it has to stay that way. Throughout U.S. history, the greatest spiritual awakenings have often erupted when things seemed the bleakest. The message of Jesus is timeless, and we have an opportunity to show an entire generation of young people what it really means to be a Christian.
Just because they aren’t going to church does not mean that Americans have lost their spiritual hunger. Sadly, these days they are just searching out other outlets to satisfy it.