Moral Decline

Documenting The Moral Decline That Threatens To Destroy America

Church Attendance In America Is Declining

Church attendance in America is on the decline.

Dave Olson, the director of church planting for the Evangelical Covenant Church, has done some really interesting research into the church attendance patterns of Americans.

Olson's findings contain a ton of bad news. For starters, his research found that the percentage of Americans regularly attending church is only 18.7%.

Olson has put his findings into an eye opening slideshow entitled "Twelve Surprising Facts about the US Church".

Here are some of the things that he found:

The percentage of people who actually physically attend a Christian church each week is quite a bit below what pollsters report.

The percentage of people who attended a Christian church each week decreased significantly between 1990 and 2000.

Only one state, Hawaii, actually saw an increase in the percentage of the population attending church between 1990 and 2000. Every other state in the entire nation saw a decrease in church attendance.

Evangelicals, mainline Protestants, and Catholics are each strong in very different regions of the nation.

The church planting rate has been declining steadily throughout the history of the United States.

If these current trends continue, the percentage of the U.S. population that attends church each week in 2050 will be about half of what it is today.


Ruokasi said...

Maybe it's the realisation that Christianity is full of shit?

Just a suggestion.

Jack said...

My wife left her christian church because they preached hate and intolerance against the weakest members of our society (gays, ethnic minorities) and promoted the immoral war in Iraq. People are becoming wise to these so-called christians that are really militaristic hate-mongering fear-engendering flakes. The jesus message of love and compassion has long been buried in favor of support for a neo-con fascist rule. This web site (while making good points on depleted uranium) falls into the same trap. There is no moral collapse in America. There is a strong urge for the fascists to divide and control. They use many (unwitting and usually good-hearted) christians to promote their anti-christian agenda.

mizlee said...

I left the church over 35 years ago when I realized that it was all a lot of hooey. I was pregnant, and had to consider whether the innocent I was about to bring into the world was really damned because of original sin, and that cemented it. The doctrine of original sin has to be the single most evil, perverted doctrine ever invented in the mind of man. I realized that indeed I was an atheist and had been since the age of seven. Of course when your father is the local Episcopalian priest, it simply is NOT DONE to question it. Imagine my surprise when my own father, about a year before he died, admitted to being atheist also. It explained a lot.

Pastor T said...

Come on guys, Don't throw the baby out with the bath water. Yeah the church has done a TERRIBLE job of representing Jesus at times but don't allow that to cause you to completely walk away from God. He is relentlessly pursuing a relationship with you. Just give Him a chance in spite of "christians".

geoffrey said...

I heard someone say something that I now realize is very true: "The world is trying to find God but they can't because the church is in the way!"

Religion SUCKS!!!!!

Jesus Christ did not come to bring a religion or a church--He came to bring the KINGDOM OF GOD to the earth

People are not looking for a good church--they are looking for the KINGDOM!!!

And the church is not the Kingdom--that's why folks are leaving!!!

David said...

I believe if Christ were on Earth today, he'd walk up to anyone and say "I still love you."

That's not the message I remember in church.

Ralph said...

It's fascinating that most posters here must of gone to evil churches filled with dastardly they learned to hate others so bitterly.

Roger Easson said...

When pastors start using the pulpit for political purposes they are perverting Christ's message. When pastors start living large off the congregation they are supposed to serve, they are perverting Christ's message. Hatred is the sign of Satan, so that pastors who spew it from the pulpit are marked by their sponsor. Churches have become God Franchises, good businesses that make a lot of money for the fat cats who run them. No wonder the American People have turned away from the fraud the church has become. I myself left my church because the pastor started to abuse the sacred text to condemn homosexuals. There is nothing in the bible about Homosexuals since the very idea of homosexuality was not invented until 1856. What is there is something very different than what we understand. Yes and Leviticus also finds tattoos an abomination yet I never hear pastors condemning tattoos. It's all very sad that an important community has been so poisoned.

Cathy said...

Good, it can't go away soon enough. I was an Evangelical for 35 years and it is one long hateful religion. My hat is off to anyone who escapes it!

Matt15 said...

"The Church" is a phrase that has come a long way from its original and intended definition. Today, we have so many denominations and church affiliations that it's difficult to know which church stands for what? Jesus is coming back one day, not for an institution or a group of people that have labeled themselves "Christians", He is coming back for those that know Him and have a personal relationship with Him. You can't fool God, He knows every heart because He is the creator of every heart - He designed every single one of us. He sees the harm that "The Church" has done and He laments over the pain that has been dealt to so many of His children. But, might I just speak a word of encouragement: God loves all people and is more concerned with having your heart than your actions. God loves all people (that includes homosexuals, murderers, and those that don't believe in Him). The apostle Paul (formerly known as Saul) had an occupation and passion for hunting down and killing Christians, and yet, He ended up writing most of the New Testament and was a mighty instrument used by God. God knows that once he has your heart, the rest will follow. One shouldn't look to the church for salvation or a divine relationship with their creator - such things are found by and through one person and that is Jesus Christ. The local church that you attend should be a place of safety and covering that you can go to for strengthening when you are weak and rejoicing when you are blessed. It is a place to be spiritually fed by an anointed pastor/priest who teaches only what is found in the Bible. It is a place to form relationships with fellow believers in Christ and a place to welcome newcomers who have never had a relationship with Him. We are to take them in just as they are - flaws and all, for this is the biblical example of how Jesus took in the outcasts of the world. For none of us have arrived - we all fall short of the glory of a perfect God, no man can boast of what he has done because he still does and always will make mistakes! Ultimately, I just want to say, I've read the posts above and it sounds like there have been some really bad experiences in church. But, there are and can still be some really good and worthwhile experiences as well. If you are unhappy with the church you are attending and you don't feel like the teaching is lining up with the Bible, switch churches! Like I mentioned earlier, there are so many good churches out there so why put up with a bad one that represents God in such a poor manner? Churches are made up of imperfect people. For this reason, they are prone to make mistakes. We would be wise to not over-invest in people but rather to put our trust in the Lord. I will close with my favorite verse and a most relevant one for this topic: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will make your path straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

NJN said...

I attend a wonderful church in NC with outstanding, dedicated leaders and people who love God.

Hope you all find one.

Te Deum said...

Americans are brainwashed:

Orthodox4Life said...

The root of this problem is also the root of most problems in the church. That problem is "SELF". People choose churches based on the programs, how well the preachers sermons tickle their toes. In short, churches are chosen based on how they serve "MYSELF". People choose their marriage partner, their friends, and everything based on how "Me, myself, and I" are served. Back to the church issue. If people were more focused on being a blessing than being blessed there would be less decline in attendance. If a church has ministry that is actually out side the walls to none members then they are in the minority. If you want to see a rapid increase in church growth/attendance then we(the church) need to put the needs of others ahead of our own.

Orthodox4Life said...

The answer to church attendance in decline can be answered with a single word. This single word is also the root of all moral decay, divorce, family break down and the list goes on. This word is "Self". People primarily select a church based on the programs, how well the preacher preaches and some even look at the facilities a church has. People are more focused on being blessed than they are being a blessing to others. They seek the hand of God more than they seek His face. These people talk to the Father like He's a "Santa Claus God" who should cater to their whims. No so you say? Ask some of your Christian friends what they look for in a church and listen at how many of those things are self-serving. Look around at how many churches have ministry to non-members outside the walls of the church. They are few and far between.

I could spend a lot of time on this subject. You can also ask the same people what they look for in a marriage partner of a friend and see how much they describe is self-serving.

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