Thursday, February 14, 2013

Mississippi Maintains Hold as Most Religious U.S. State

A Gallup survey released this week reveals that Mississippi remained the most religious US state in 2012, with 58% of its residents classified as very religious.  At the other end of the spectrum, Vermont remained the least religious state, with 19% of its residents classified as very religious.  The results are based on more than 348,000 interviews conducted as part of Gallup Daily tracking in 2012, including more than 1,000 interviews.

Overall, 40% of Americans nationwide were classified as very religious in 2012 — based on saying religion is an important part of their daily life and that they attend religious services every week or almost every week. Thirty-one percent of Americans were nonreligious, saying religion is not an important part of their daily life and that they seldom or never attend religious services.

A separate poll released by Gallup in January indicated that the percentage of “nones” in the U.S. — those not identifying with any particular religion — remained relatively flat in 2012 after growing 1.1 percent in each of the previous two years.

The rise of the “nones” is a much-chronicled phenomenon, their ranks swelling by 22 percent over the past four years.  Even so, a recent book titled “God is Alive and Well” by Gallup's editor-in-chief, Frank Newport, speculates that “religion will be even more important in years ahead," based on analysis of various factors and trends.

Go to the full article for a list of the most religious and least religious states, along with a map showing Gallup's findings for each state.

6 comments:

The Underground Pewster said...

So the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi must be growing by leaps and bounds... right???

Interesting that our P.B. hails from one of the least religious states.

Building on her success in Nevada...

RMBruton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RMBruton said...

If by religious they mean idolatrous then they are probably right. We are also the fattest State, the State with the highest rate of teen pregnancies, infant mortality, and the lowest household income. Just imagine what it would be like if we weren't so religious?

Robert S. Munday said...

The Gallup survey obviously didn't measure the content or depth of religious belief. Cynics have sometimes commented that, in America, religion is a thousand miles wide and only an inch and a half deep. That is why we have our work cut out for us.

RMBruton said...

Robert,
Being a resident of that "Most Religious State", I am constantly a witness to the superficial claims of many people in so many settings that it has lost all meaning. They have the depth and sincerity of those countless "Have a nice day"s and "Don't work too hard"s that people so routinely spew as they step off the elevators of our lives. Pauline Christianity is replete with missionaries out to win the World for their Messiah, spreading it thin and wide. They have it completely wrong.

Robert S. Munday said...

RMBruton,

Okay, I get your point about Mississippi. My purpose in running the piece wasn't to extol Mississippi, but simply to report on the Gallup survey and provide a link to the article, where readers can view a map to see how their own states compared. I ran the title about Mississippi as it was in the original article.