US Protestant majority diminishes

The US no longer has a majority of Protestants, as the number of Americans who do not identify themselves as being part of any religion has increased, a major new study has found.
The Pew report found that only 48 per cent of people it polled identified themselves as Protestants today. Five years ago, this figure stood at 53 per cent.
In comparison, one-fifth of the US public have described themselves as being “religiously unaffiliated”. This is particularly evident in young adults, with a third under the age of 30 less likely to belong to a particular religious denomination.
Since 2007, non-affiliated persons, also known as “nones”, have increased from 15 per cent to 20 per cent, with 13 million people now describing themselves as either atheists or agnostics.
“The growth in the number of religiously unaffiliated Americans … is largely driven by generational replacement, the gradual supplanting of older generations by newer ones,” Pew said. However, this isn’t explicitly the only factor.
“Generation Xers and Baby Boomers also have become more religiously unaffiliated in recent years,” the report went on to say.
“In 2012, 21 per cent of Gen Xers and 15 per cent of Baby Boomers describe themselves as religiously unaffiliated, up slightly from 18 per cent and 12 per cent respectively since 2007. The trend lines for earlier generations are essentially flat.”
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