Brian Mark Weber / January 26, 2018

Christianity Is Alive and Well in America

Yet we’ve heard over and over again that the fall of Christianity in America is just a matter of time.

We’ve heard over and over again that the fall of Christianity in America is just a matter of time. As science and technology promise to answer questions about our existence, we’re supposedly moving in droves away from a Bible that’s considered a mere collection of stories instead of the word of God, and walking away from churches that simply can’t inspire us to believe in something greater than ourselves. Ultimately, they say, we’ll become a nation of agnostics and atheists. Secularism is the future.

But such doom and gloom may be premature. As Glenn Stanton writes in The Federalist, “The Baylor Institute for Studies of Religion found … that the percentage of church-attending Americans relative to overall population is more than four times greater today than it was in 1776. The number of attendees has continued to rise each and every decade over our nation’s history right up until the present day.”

Didn’t see that one coming? Such studies seem to fly in the face of what everyone else is saying. Even some Christian leaders bemoan the state of their faith as seemingly fewer people show up for Sunday services and as people continue to devour a popular culture promoting values antithetical to Christianity. But there’s more to the problem than meets the eye.

One of the theories as to why some people are leaving organized religion, or becoming less religious, is known as the secularization thesis. This is the idea that people as a whole are becoming more secular in the industrialized world.

Yet despite the march of science and technology, various studies show that Americans are not abandoning religion and running toward secularism as quickly as people are in many European countries. In fact, if we’re abandoning anything at all it might be the very churches embracing secularism instead of offering time-honored traditions and biblical teachings.

Stanton suggests it’s “extremely likely that if your church teaches the Bible with seriousness, calls its people to real discipleship, and encourages daily intimacy with God, it has multiple services to handle the coming crowds.”

It’s no wonder that churches turning away from Christianity and toward progressivism are losing congregants. They’re more likely to recognize same-sex marriage, support abortion, accept transgenderism and advocate open borders.

Most people go to church for guidance, for answers, or for some hope that there are still some bedrock beliefs to hold onto in an “if it feels good, do it” world. As a result, it shouldn’t be surprising that evangelical churches are growing, while those on the Left are losing members.

Looking at the data more carefully shows that those who are strongly religious are just as devoted to their faith as ever before — indeed even more so. A significant number of those leaving Christianity weren’t very committed to begin with. In other words, there’s no crisis in faith across the country. The believers are still devout, while others find something else to do on Sunday.

Mainline Protestant churches are typically more progressive, but they aren’t alone in facing a numbers crisis. In 2014, a joint effort of the Public Religion Research Institute and the Religion News Service produced a report showing how American Catholics are becoming increasingly progressive.

The study revealed that a slight majority of all Catholics support marriage “equality,” LGBT protections, abortion “rights,” and citizenship for illegal immigrants. While the Vatican itself may be opposed to abortion, its leadership is increasingly open to at least discussing the others.

So that’s why the pews are empty.

Nearly half of conservative Catholics don’t recognize the church they grew up in. Theirs isn’t a rejection of the Bible or the Vatican, but of secularism and progressivism. Again, those leaving our churches are either not that religious anyway, or they’re growing weary of hearing Democrat Party talking points during Sunday services.

But just how much does politics have to do with faith?

A study conducted last year by Indiana University and Harvard found, “The downward trend in average American religiousness may then be less the result of a society-wide fading of the importance of religion to people’s lives — which we would expect on the basis of the secularization thesis — and more a function of the politicization of American religion in the late 1980s following the rise of the Christian Right.”

This issue shouldn’t be viewed only through the lens of Left and Right, or Democrat and Republican. The degree to which politics plays into our society and religion is still unclear. The Pew Research Center discovered that 45% of people who say religion is “very important” are Republicans, while only 38% of Democrats said the same. This seems to support the common belief that Republicans are more religious or spiritual than Democrats. However, 46% of those who say religion is “not at all important” are Republicans, according to the same study.

The Pew study does include some numbers showing a decline in religious practices in various demographic categories, but it concludes: “At the same time, the vast majority of Americans (77% of all adults) continue to identify with some religious faith. And this religiously affiliated population — comprising a wide variety of Protestants as well as Catholics, Jews, Mormons, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus and adherents of other faith traditions — is, on the whole, just as religiously committed today as when the study was first conducted in 2007. Fully two-thirds of religiously affiliated adults say they pray every day.”

If nothing else, these studies seem to give us a glimmer of hope in a time when we’re being told that the roof is caving in. Perhaps, unlike in Europe, America still has a long way to go before secularism is the dominant religion.

This should not come as a surprise. Our nation is built upon the belief that our rights come from God, and that’s a very strong foundation.

Start a conversation using these share links:

Who We Are

The Patriot Post is a highly acclaimed weekday digest of news analysis, policy and opinion written from the heartland — as opposed to the MSM’s ubiquitous Beltway echo chambers — for grassroots leaders nationwide. More

What We Offer

On the Web

We provide solid conservative perspective on the most important issues, including analysis, opinion columns, headline summaries, memes, cartoons and much more.

Via Email

Choose our full-length Digest or our quick-reading Snapshot for a summary of important news. We also offer Cartoons & Memes on Monday and Alexander’s column on Wednesday.

Our Mission

The Patriot Post is steadfast in our mission to extend the endowment of Liberty to the next generation by advocating for individual rights and responsibilities, supporting the restoration of constitutional limits on government and the judiciary, and promoting free enterprise, national defense and traditional American values. We are a rock-solid conservative touchstone for the expanding ranks of grassroots Americans Patriots from all walks of life. Our mission and operation budgets are not financed by any political or special interest groups, and to protect our editorial integrity, we accept no advertising. We are sustained solely by you. Please support The Patriot Fund today!

The Patriot Post and Patriot Foundation Trust, in keeping with our Military Mission of Service, are proud sponsors of the National Medal of Honor Heritage Center, the Congressional Medal of Honor Society, Folds of Honor, Honoring the Sacrifice, Warrior Freedom Service Dogs, Officer Christian Fellowship, the Air University Foundation, the Naval War College Foundation, and the Naval Aviation Museum Foundation.


“Our cause is noble; it is the cause of mankind!” —George Washington

The Patriot Post is protected speech, as enumerated in the First Amendment and enforced by the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, in accordance with the endowed and unalienable Rights of All Mankind.

Copyright © 2023 The Patriot Post. All Rights Reserved.

The Patriot Post does not support Internet Explorer. We recommend installing the latest version of Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, or Google Chrome.