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article imagePoll: Influence of religion declining in America

By Kevin Jess     Dec 30, 2010 in World
Worldwide, America is identified as a religious country but a new Gallup poll suggests that Americans in near record numbers say that religion's influence on their society is declining.
In 1957 Gallup first asked the question "At the present time, do you think religion as a whole is increasing its influence on American life or losing its influence?" Since that time American views on this subject have fluctuated, with the highest number recorded in 1970 in the midst of the Vietnam war and a time of social upheaval. During that year 75 percent of Americans felt that religion's influence was waning.
Today, 70 percent of Americans share the view that religion is losing its influence which shows a significant increase since 2001 - after the terrorist attacks the number showed a sharp decline. This year and 2009 are tied as having the most Americans sharing this view since 1970.
When Americans were asked if religion was important in their own lives the results were somewhat more stable although showing a small decline. Fifty-four percent of Americans said that religion was important in their lives, a sharp contrast from the early 1950's where 75 percent of American shared that view.
Membership in a church or synagogue also showed a decline that has been steady over the last 70 years. Today 61 percent of Americans claim to belong to a particular church, the lowest since 1947.
According to the Christian Post, about 75 percent of Americans are Christian.
More about Religion, Influence, Poll, Gallup
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