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Working-Class Americans Retreating from Church

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posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 02:30 PM
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Despite stereotypes to the contrary, Americans with only a high school diploma are dropping out of church faster than their more-educated counterparts.

In the 1970s, a new study finds, half of white Americans with a high school education attended church at least monthly. Now only 37 percent do. In contrast, 46 percent of highly educated white Americans attend church, only a 5 percent drop from the 1970s.

"There is a retreat from religion in what you'd call middle America, or working-class America," said study researcher W. Bradford Wilcox, a University of Virginia sociologist. Wilcox presented the work Sunday (Aug. 21) at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association in Las Vegas.




This is some of the most exciting news that I have heard in a while. Good to see the average american realizing that all the church does is steal from you and really provides no benefit for anyone but themselves. Some people are actually waking up.


The less people that go to church the better, all it will do is take more power away from religions when people start seeing there is no purpose to them.

I just wish the world as a whole would realize this...

Any thoughts?

Pred...




posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 02:39 PM
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Originally posted by predator0187
Source


Despite stereotypes to the contrary, Americans with only a high school diploma are dropping out of church faster than their more-educated counterparts.

In the 1970s, a new study finds, half of white Americans with a high school education attended church at least monthly. Now only 37 percent do. In contrast, 46 percent of highly educated white Americans attend church, only a 5 percent drop from the 1970s.

"There is a retreat from religion in what you'd call middle America, or working-class America," said study researcher W. Bradford Wilcox, a University of Virginia sociologist. Wilcox presented the work Sunday (Aug. 21) at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association in Las Vegas.




This is some of the most exciting news that I have heard in a while. Good to see the average american realizing that all the church does is steal from you and really provides no benefit for anyone but themselves. Some people are actually waking up.


The less people that go to church the better, all it will do is take more power away from religions when people start seeing there is no purpose to them.

I just wish the world as a whole would realize this...

Any thoughts?

Pred...


Is it possible that there is just a different way of reading the statistics?

Maybe that is showing that the those attending church are more likely to pursue higher education compared to those not attending, while those not attending church are more likely to only get as far as a high school diploma.

It does not state what type of church in the quote either. That might also make a difference.



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 02:40 PM
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I find that odd. The churches around here are saying attendance is spiraling upwards. Baptisms at an all time high. I go to nondenominational church. I live close to several other churches and have noticed a growing parking problem over the last 2 years on sundays. I would add I recently started attending again in the last 6 months after an absence of about 20 years. I call HOAX!
edit on 22-8-2011 by Hillbilly123069 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 02:46 PM
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This is some of the most exciting news that I have heard in a while.


Nothing exciting about this at all. I live in a small town, mostly white bible belt area, and this is just more evidence of societal breakdown. I see it almost everyday.

No jobs, an incredibly destructive meth problem, and illegal immigration are driving forces behind this.



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 03:10 PM
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This is a good thing as long as they don't forget who Jesus Christ, the Holly Ghost & Notra Dame is. The bible has been corrupted. See www.fatimamovement.com... and make up your own mine if this is the case.



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 08:48 PM
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S & F

I agree that the whole world needs a wake-up call from the religious game.

It seems that the younger generation is less interested in church as a whole, because they are growing up virtually in a world surrounded by science and technology, void of 'miracles and blessings'.

If humanity as a whole wants to advance into a Type I or Type II civilization, we have to let religion go.

I'm lovin it!!



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 10:18 PM
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Back in the 1970s one could still graduate from high school and get a decent paying industrial/manufacturing job. That is no longer the case. For some in that category, church attendance has become "unaffordable".

Anecdotally, for about the last six years, for people I knew who quit attending church, money had a lot to do with it. As these people lost jobs/income, tithing to a church became impossible.

One family left and never returned, because the preacher asked his flock for more contributions, as he had children who needed to attend college. Since the family itself was having financial difficulty and couldn't even begin to think how their own kids would afford college, they were disgusted to hear how they needed to fork over more money for the church/preacher's kids.



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 10:30 PM
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My family and I used to be regular attendees at church, but we can no longer afford to drive to our out of town church any more. We don't feel comfortable at the churches in our town either so we just stopped going. We spend so much on gas for my husband to get to work, and now, I work on weekends a lot. Plus, when you figure in that you are expected to tithe, church has become an expense that can be done without, as I believe that I can worship God anywhere I choose. I imagine my family is not alone.



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 10:39 PM
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reply to post by predator0187
 


I personally think, if this is true, is that working class families have money usually. The poor generally feel embarrassed if they are not able to give to the church. However, this may say a lot about how much people that attend church use church as a social status, and not necessarily to learn the word of god. While not an ironclad rule, I would imagine many people that attend church do so because that is the type of person they want to appear to be.

There are many churches that really do care about people. There are probably just as many that are in it to make themselves important, prestigious, or rich. I hear that alternative churches are actually starting to boom. Churches like Oprah's church, and more gnostic churches are flourishing.



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 10:47 PM
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Originally posted by desert
Back in the 1970s one could still graduate from high school and get a decent paying industrial/manufacturing job. That is no longer the case. For some in that category, church attendance has become "unaffordable".

Anecdotally, for about the last six years, for people I knew who quit attending church, money had a lot to do with it. As these people lost jobs/income, tithing to a church became impossible.

One family left and never returned, because the preacher asked his flock for more contributions, as he had children who needed to attend college. Since the family itself was having financial difficulty and couldn't even begin to think how their own kids would afford college, they were disgusted to hear how they needed to fork over more money for the church/preacher's kids.



Thanks for the post, as this is exactly what I was talking about. The fact that people have to pay to go to church deeply disturbs me. The Catholic church makes tons of money and yet their followers are still expected to pay to attend. I know they don't HAVE to but it is frowned upon.

The least the catholic church should do is make sure their ministers do not have to leech off of their followers.

It's a really screwed up system and the majority of society doesn't pay any attention to it.

Pred...



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 10:56 PM
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That is an interesting finding. Normally from studies I've seen higher IQ tends to go with secular beliefs to some degree.
edit on 22-8-2011 by Turq1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 11:00 PM
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reply to post by predator0187
 


I would disagree with you statement about churches in general. For alot of people it helps tremendously as it's a place for them to gather among friends and partake in their worship. For alot of people that is the most important thing in their lives. My father in law does alot of missionary work through his church helping to fix up Indian reservations so they defintely can be positive.



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 11:14 PM
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Originally posted by predator0187
Good to see the average american realizing that all the church does is steal from you and really provides no benefit for anyone but themselves.


In many cases, that's a flat out lie.

There are a boatload of churches who regularly contribute to valuable charity causes. Like getting water to villages in Africa. Or funding food programs.

I am not saying theft by deception does not occur in some churches, but I am not down with you making a blanket statement like that. It's not true, and the church I work at is a prime example of this. They regularly have programs like I mentioned, in addition to adoption programs and all sorts of stuff to help the less fortunate- both here and in foreign countries.

The religious establishment is not all bad, ya know. So speak the truth please.
edit on Mon Aug 22nd 2011 by TrueAmerican because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2011 @ 11:41 PM
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reply to post by TrueAmerican
 


Religion is bad. The individuals that are in each church are not bad nor did I ever say they were.

Sure, you might have a great church that helps out the fellow men around them and might actually give something back to society, but the majority of them don't. Also, for the amount that the church makes, they give away nothing but pennies. They are in the "elite" ranks and do not have to pay taxes, but yet the world is full of starving and dying people and some sit in cities made of gold.

While the little people (not meant to be derogatory at all) can give some back that are above you do less, and the people above them do even less. Good to see some positivity coming from a church but that is rarity.

Pred...



posted on Aug, 23 2011 @ 06:24 AM
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reply to post by predator0187
 


as more people become informed, they learn to think for themselves.

many in the caribbean , south america and africa are aware of the role the popes played in the history of slavery.

and even in the protestant faith, the clergy that turn out to be just thieves is ever growing.

also it's become more acceptable to be spiritual without belonging to a specific religious cultural group.

but there will always be those who go to church so that grandma and aunt clara don't write them out of their will.



posted on Aug, 23 2011 @ 06:57 AM
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I work for a Church Offering Envelope Company as a Software Developer for Management systems. I can tell you first hand, that this has been happening for awhile. Churches are also downsizing and a large part of this has to do with our Economy being so unstable. I would say these numbers are spot on and this is why:

As evidenced by the Church Management Software that we have built, we can see that the people who have given (Church Offering/Tithe) in the median to low range are leaving the church more rapidly. The strongest and most generous givers tend to stay. We can tell who is staying and leaving because we make and send the envelopes based on a members list that each church sends every month/several months. Our software is built for the church to monitor their church offering envelopes, but also to increase engagement with members. Seeing that our company serves over 8000 churches, I have seen a pretty steady pattern of this, especially because I deal closely with the databases and support for troubled customers. In all honesty, I can see the direct correlation to the economic downturns. When our economy made slight bounces back, we saw an increase in giving and member attendance. When the economy dips we see less people attending and they are made up of mostly the middle to low givers.
I think it can be attributed to:
One - people feel guilty when they cannot give. Many middle to lower class families can't afford the "15% of your income" that the church suggests you give each year. (crazy I know)
Two- People don't have the time to attend because of an increased workload, searching for work, or just doing whatever it takes to put food on the table.
Three- Lack of faith in a trying time. People just don't see a return from the church for what they put in.
Four-People are realizing that the Bible is right in front of them.. They don't need someone else to interpret the words for them.

I'm not really a religious man by any means. I'm spiritual which I find to be very different than what I would call "religious". Working in my industry has shown me a lot of truths about organized religion and especially all forms of Christianity and Catholicism. Ugly truths. The seedier and greedier side of the church. There are some good ones out there who really do use the money for good, but a large portion of them don't ever give back what they receive "in the name of god". I don't blame people for leaving, I think the church has overstepped their spiritual boundary and people need to be a little less dependent on the church. I say this knowing very well that the failure of the church also puts my job in jeopardy. That is how much I oppose organized religion.

"God Loves a cheerful giver" - That is a quote that I see printed on thousands of envelopes that leave this place everyday.



posted on Aug, 23 2011 @ 09:10 AM
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Originally posted by Hillbilly123069
I find that odd. The churches around here are saying attendance is spiraling upwards. Baptisms at an all time high. I go to nondenominational church. I live close to several other churches and have noticed a growing parking problem over the last 2 years on sundays. I would add I recently started attending again in the last 6 months after an absence of about 20 years. I call HOAX!
edit on 22-8-2011 by Hillbilly123069 because: (no reason given)


in the North East USA, church buildings are for sale in every city and town.
protestants are doing best, you can stay open as long as you have a few wealthy patrons.
the catholic church put 4 churches for sale in this town alone last year.

some are becoming buddist temples etc, but many are being offered real cheap.

i hope someone figures out how to recycle these old brick and granite buildings.

these buildings are too expensive to maintain, and it's going to be expensive to tear them down.

i hope some good Ferengi comes up with a solution soon.



posted on Sep, 4 2011 @ 04:46 AM
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Originally posted by predator0187
The less people that go to church the better, all it will do is take more power away from religions when people start seeing there is no purpose to them.


$5 says you won't find an atheistic or secular humanist charitable NGO. AFAIK, they simply don't exist. That means, that if you ended up homeless tomorrow, and needed food; you wouldn't be going to an organisation run by atheists in order to get it. Soup kitchens and other such places are both run and staffed primarily by Christians.

I went to church for most of my teens. Granted, I didn't stay Christian; but at their best, churches can and do serve a legitimate, beneficial social function. They bring people together, and provide social interaction for people who otherwise may not have it.

Clergymen often do attempt to provide legitimate psychological counselling as well. Again, granted that if it doesn't consist of much more than recital of scripture, it's questionable how much good it would do, but it is a role that some of them genuinely take seriously.

I don't know whether or not you've ever actually been to a church yourself or not, but you sound like the type who is willing to condemn them as serving no legitimate purpose, without ever having actually investigated the validity of that claim.



posted on Sep, 4 2011 @ 04:50 AM
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reply to post by predator0187
 

"... for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first..." 2 Thessalonians 2:3



posted on Sep, 5 2011 @ 08:38 PM
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I was taught when I was young that if you did not belong to the church you would never get to heaven.
Now I can't figure out how that could help.
I can see how some churches could make people think they are going to heaven but it is more a delusion than anything else.
There probably is some good churches but I don't know any.
I get a lot of hostility when I come to a church door and it probably has something to do with a visual financial assessment they make, to see if they really want you hanging out.



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