The story at a glance
- Deseret News’ Faith in America Survey, conducted by The Marist College Poll, found that 54 percent of Americans believe in the biblical God.
- This includes a third of those who said they did not practice a particular religion.
- Polls show that church attendance over the past decade has dropped dramatically.
Most Americans say they hold religious beliefs despite a drop in church attendance and other spiritual practices, according to a recent poll.
the Deseret News “Faith in America Survey” conducted by the Marist College Poll, found that 54% of Americans believe in the biblical God, including a third of those who said they did not practice a particular religion. Seven out of 10 respondents consider themselves spiritual, whether or not they practice a religious faith.
“While the state of religion is continually changing, our study found that the majority of Americans still hold core religious beliefs and derive moral guidance from their families and religious traditions,” Hal Boyd, editor of Deseret National, said in a press release.
“The vast majority of Americans, 7 out of 10, think the country would be better off if we prayed for each other. And most Americans say the American Constitution was inspired by God,” Boyd continued. “Despite the headlines that highlight the decline of religion, faith remains a strong moral force in American life.”
But church attendance over the past decade has fallen dramatically, according to polls. An April 2011 Marist poll found that 52 percent of Americans attend a religious service at least once a month. Polling data from this year shows only 40% said they attend church services at the same rate.
There is also a consensus belief between religious and non-religious Americans that “the nation’s moral compass is pointed in the wrong direction.” Still, the poll showed a clear political divide between Democrats and Republicans on the issue — with 90% of Republican respondents saying it was going in the wrong direction, compared to 51% of Democrats saying the same.
Yet the poll concluded that there was no difference between religious and non-religious respondents in their view that a religious belief is not required for morality, with over 90% in each group achieving this conclusion.
The survey measured the responses of 1,653 American adults between January 19 and 26.
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Posted on March 22, 2022