A study conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute, a research organization which focuses on religious tradition and values, shows white Americans are turning away from Christianity.
Based on interviews with more than 101, 000 Americans across the country in 2016, the study found less than half the population in the US are white Christians. In 1976, eight in 10 Americans were white Christians, but today 43 percent are both white and Christian.
According to the study, evangelical Protestants are also on the decline. In 2006, evangelical Protestants were 23 percent, but today their population has decreased to 17 percent. Overall, 69 percent of the population is Christian, and 72 percent are white.
Robert P. Jones, PRRI CEO and author of The End of White Christian America, says the report provides “solid evidence of a new, second wave of white Christian decline that is occurring among white evangelical Protestants just over the last decade in the U.S.”
“Prior to 2008, white evangelical Protestants seemed to be exempt from the waves of demographic change and disaffiliation that were eroding the membership bases of white mainline Protestants and white Catholics. We now see that these waves simply crested later for white evangelical Protestants.”
NEW: America’s Changing Religious Identity.
— PRRI (@PRRIpoll) September 6, 2017
Almost two-thirds of white Americans surveyed are over 65 years. The findings revealed Christians in America have an older median age, with 60 percent over 50.
Younger Americans are more likely to identify as non-religious, with a third of 18-29-year-olds not belonging to a religion. Almost a quarter of all Americans, meanwhile, don’t identify with any religion.
The report found Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus make up three percent of those surveyed, each having one percent. Orthodox Christians make up one percent, and are 81 percent white. Jews account for two percent of those surveyed.
Then there’s the 24 percent who don’t affiliate with a religion, plus the 3 percent that said they didn’t know or refused to answer.