Millions More Leaving Organized Religion

The rise of the nones (those people claiming no religious affiliation) has been a popular topic of conversation since well before I started this blog in 2009.  As one who has long been involved in leadership positions within so-called organized religion, I find this ongoing shift has significant implications for Christian communities of faith. Earlier this month the Public Religion Research Institute shared the latest statistic: 22% of American adults are now nones.  There are, however, many Read More …

Causes of Religious Non-Affiliation

Allen Downey, a computer scientist at Olin College of Engineering in Massachusetts, recently published a paper suggesting that the rapid rise in those who label their religious preference as "none" (no religious affiliation) is likely caused by generational replacement - 50%, religious upbringing - 25%, internet use - 20%, and college education - 5%. So What? As one who studies changes in American religious affiliation, I am fascinated to find a computer scientist suggesting a Read More …

US Jews = Less Religious

A recently published Pew Research Center’s Religion & Public Life Project survey shows that American Jews are becoming less religious.  Currently, just over one-in-five Jews (22%) self-identify as having no religion.  While the rise in the percentage of Jews who label themselves as not being religious is noteworthy, the generational divide is of even greater significance.  The percent of Jews who have no religion increases from the oldest living generation to the youngest with no Read More …

Rise of the Nones

Claude Fischer, professor of sociology at UC Berkeley, recently wrote a blog post that provides a solid overview of the growth of "nones" (those who self-identify as religiously non-affiliated) over the last 30 years.  The three most significant polls (GSS, Gallup, and Pew) all illustrate the rise of the "nones" from just 7% of the adult population in the United States in the 1980s to 18-20% by 2012.   Fischer remarks, "By all these methods, the rise in 'nones' is a major American social Read More …

Canadian Nones

While I have written extensively about the rise of the religiously non-affiliated (also known as "nones") in the United States, I have given far less attention to how this trend is impacting our neighbor to the North.  Results from the 2011 National Household Survey show even as Christianity remains the dominant religion in Canada, the nones are growing quickly.  More specifically, as a percentage of the population by year "nones" accounted for 2011: 23.9% 2001: 16.5%, and 1991: Read More …