Studies conducted by the Pew Research Center indicate that eighty percent of Americans claim belief in God, yet church participation rate is declining.
Across the board, Americans are in fact holding onto faith but not the church. The question then is why?
Remarkably, the reasoning behind such is rather simple. Americans and others who hold onto a belief in God do not identify with the current state of the Church.
Furthermore, a previous study conducted by Landon Schnabel and Sean Bock titled; ‘The Persistent and Exceptional Intensity of American Religion: A Response to Recent Research,’ claims a similar fate for American Churches.
However, this study indicates that Christians in America are not giving up on the Church entirely, instead, they are leaving the larger, more liberal churches for more conservative ones.
Regardless of the studies, it is evident that a generational change is occurring within the Church. Further, previous generations viewed going to church as mandatory, today’s generations see church attendance as optional. Church attendance may also be declining because of busier schedules and the availability of online sermons.
In addition, the polarization of politics and society pits one side against the other. For example, in parts of California, many Christians claim that they are forced to keep their faith private because of the threat to livelihood caused by the media.
With Church participation rates down, what does it mean going forward for Christians in America? Is California the only state that so many are forced to keep their faith private, or is this widespread?