Pew Forum presents picture of fluid U.S. religious affiliation
This article is quickly making the rounds (Time Mag's version here, AssociatedPress here):
More than a quarter of adult Americans have left the faith of their childhood to join another religion or no religion, according to a new survey of religious affiliation by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.
The report, titled “U.S. Religious Landscape Survey,” depicts a highly fluid and diverse national religious life. If shifts among Protestant denominations are included, then it appears that 44 percent of Americans have switched religious affiliations.
... which means we have plenty of work to do.
The percentage of Catholics in the American population has held steady for decades at about 25 percent. But that masks a precipitous decline in native-born Catholics. The proportion has been bolstered by the large influx of Catholic immigrants, mostly from Latin America, the survey found.
The Catholic Church has lost more adherents than any other group: about one-third of respondents raised Catholic said they no longer identified as such. Based on the data, the survey showed, “this means that roughly 10 percent of all Americans are former Catholics.”
Get the original report here at the Pew Forum. They have a summary with links here.
To add a little context, the UK Times reports that "Over half of Britons claim no religion."
I'll save my comments until I have some time to wade through the data.
update: In the meantime, see what Amy has to say, CNA, and BettNet.
video: "Pew Forum Director Luis Lugo gives an overview of the U.S. Religious Landscape Survey and talks about some of its key findings" (source):