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Belief Limbo

In September 2017, the Public Religion Research Institute published a study of religion in America that showed a tripling of the religiously unaffiliated since 1990, from 8 percent to 24 percent of the population. The majority of the unaffiliated call themselves secular; a quarter of the . . . . Continue Reading »

Evangelizing the Nones

By far the fastest-growing “religious” group in the United States is the “nones,” that is, those who claim no religious affiliation. In the latest Pew Research Center survey, fully 25 percent of the country—80 million people—say that they have no formal religion, and the growth . . . . Continue Reading »

Christian but Not Religious

Recently, a pastor at an Evangelical church in New York City (we have them) told me about a young man in his congregation who had joined an online dating site. The young man was a Christian believer who wanted to find a woman with the same values. Yet when it came to telling prospective mates about . . . . Continue Reading »

The Religious Crowds

In the 2002 Brazilian film City of God (Cidade de Deus), the narrator, Rocket, provides the audience with a kind of social taxonomy of the eponymous favela during a street party. There was the “samba crowd,” the “soul crowd,” the gangs and the “religious crowd.” (Comunidade do crença, . . . . Continue Reading »

Sons of Nones

On a recent train ride, I sat next to a young German woman living in the United States. She was raised by atheists, but had a deep religious longing. She was baptized and tried Christianity. Her experience of Christianity in Germany left her wanting something deeper, and through a friend, became a . . . . Continue Reading »

Abraham Lincoln, None?

Today is Presidents Day in the United States, a national holiday. Actually, that’s not quite right. Officially, the federal holiday is still called Washington’s Birthday, and that’s the official name here in New York, too. (Who knew?) But, unofficially, America uses this day to . . . . Continue Reading »

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