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originally posted by: watchitburn
Religion works for some people, and doesn't work for others.
I don't think we should care what other people believe or not believe, as long as they're not trying to push it on others, I don't think it's relevant.
I'm not religious, but I wouldn't call myself an atheist or agnostic either. I just don't care.
From bondage to spiritual faith,
From spiritual faith to great courage,
From courage to liberty,
From liberty to abundance,
From abundance to selfishness,
From selfishness to complacency,
From complacency to apathy,
From apathy to dependency,
From dependency back again to bondage."
There're some interesting new membership statistics from the Assemblies of God denomination, which has had 24 years of continuous growth and is expanding at a rate faster than the U.S. population.
When tracking changes to gauge the overall health of a denomination, it makes more sense to look at long-term trends. If we look back 50 years (to 1965) we can see a clear and unequivocal trendline: liberal denominations have declined sharply while conservative denominations have increased or remained the same.
Church of God in Christ
In 1965, the CoG had 425,000 members. In 2012, the membership was 5,499,875, an increase of 1,194 percent.
Presbyterian Church in America
In 1973, the PCA had 41,232 members. In 2013, the membership was 367,033, an increase of 790 percent.
(Note: The Presbyterian Church in America was founded in 1974 by conservative members of the Presbyterian Church in the United States who rejected that church's merger with the United Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.)
Evangelical Free Church of America
In 1965, the EFCA had 43,851 members. In 2013, the membership was 372,321 , an increase of 749 percent.
Assemblies of God
In 1965, the AoG had 572,123 members. In 2013, the membership was 3,030,944, an increase of 430 percent.
African Methodist Episcopal Church
In 1951, the AME had 1,166,301 members. In 2012, the membership was 2,500,000, an increase of 114 percent.
Southern Baptist Convention
In 1965, the SBC had 10,770,573 members. In 2013, the membership was 15,735,640, an increase of 46 percent.
There was an amazing increase in the number of Wiccan books published over the past eight years: about 4.6 times. This may imply that Wicca increased in membership between 2008 and 2015 by a similar factor. We conclude that the best estimate we can make, based on inadequate hard data, is that the number of Wiccan adults in the U.S. had increased from, 602,000 in 2008 to two million by the end of 2015. If one were to include teens, which religious surveys generally don't, we estimate over three million Wiccan practitioners were active in the U.S. by the start of 2017.
The sky still isn't falling on American Christianity or evangelicalism. Rather, there is a stunning growth in nondenominational evangelicalism that is reshaping the religious landscape today. More and more churchgoing Christians, when asked about denomination, are saying, "none."
American Christianity is becoming more nondenominational and more evangelical at the same time. And those are stats you can believe in.
That’s because when the society is sick, the sick people look healthy. Everyone acts like being sick is the norm.
originally posted by: watchitburn
a reply to: Woodcarver
Okay, but I have plenty of friends who are religious and they don't seem have any problems functioning in society.
I don't think it needs to go to one extreme or the other. As I said, it works for some and doesn't work for others.