I was researching an article last month and ran across some interesting statistics.  Then I got an email in my inbox yesterday that made me go back and do some more digging.  I found it truly interesting.

According to the World Almanac only 79% of Americans claim Christianity as their religion. The 79% is the figure for folks that consider themselves born again Barna Update which is different than just believing in God or just going to church on holidays, compared to that part of the population that is deeply devoted to God.

A slight majority of Americans (54%) said they are so committed to “having a deeper connection with God” that they would “do whatever it takes to get and maintain that deeper relationship.” Adults 40 and younger were the least devoted to this outcome: less than half (44%) strongly affirmed such a commitment, compared to 58% of Boomers and 63% of older adults. Barna Update

In other words… the huge majority of this nation is open to religious material.  This is why those TV shows like Touched By An Angel and Highway to Heaven were so popular for so long.  Now consider this…

Despite the onslaught of new technologies such as the Internet and DVDs, most Americans still read books. In the past two years, three out of four adults (73%) claim to have read at least one book from cover to cover. The people most likely to do so include women, college graduates and evangelicals.
In total, 44% of all adults had read at least one book whose main theme was religious or spiritual in nature. Half of all women had done so, compared to just one-third of men. Similarly, half of college graduates had read such a book, while only one-third of those with a high diploma or less education had.   Barna Update

Here’s the shocker!  17% of atheists have read at least 1 religious book in the past 2 years.  (ibid) 

Religious books [non-fiction] had been read by more than four out of five evangelicals (81%), by half of all non-evangelical born again adults (50%) and individuals associated with non-Christian faith groups (49%), but by only one-third of notional Christians (35%) and just one out of six atheists and agnostics (17%). Barna Update

 But the really sad thing is, only 56% of the people in the U.S. read any book in the year 2002 compared to 51% in 2001 and 41% in 1999.  It’s getting better, but slowly.  National Endowment for the Arts


Gina is the marketing manager for Virtustar, an information technology firm, and a redactor for internet marketing company.  She is a columnist for Live As If.org and a site admin for Studylight.org.  Visit her blog at Refreshment In Refuge.

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