Posts Tagged ‘growth’

Numbers vs. nurture: Predicting the future of religion

Date-setting for the end of the world has never worked out too well for biblical prophets. Some social scientists, however, say increasingly sophisticated demographic tools can provide vauable insight into the future of religion. Under one scenario for the U.S., Hispanic Catholics and non-Christian religions will be big winners, while predominantly white religious groups will lag behind. Other researchers, however, are skeptical of such attempts to predict the future.

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Not everyone wins, but all faiths grow in competitive marketplace

The more competition, the better for American religion. Major immigration from Asia, the growth into the thousands of religious movements within and outside the church and an active and influential secular community have not stopped the growth of the nation’s largest faith — Christianity. Instead, the expanding religion marketplace is proving to be a win-win situation for all faiths, according to J. Gordon Melton, founding director of the Institute for the Study of American Religion in Santa Barbara, Calif.

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The black church at a crossroads: Staying alive in the city

Black churches represent the fourth largest religious group of congregations in America, behind only Catholic and predominantly white mainline and evangelical Protestant churches. Yet they are often as invisible to the majority of Americans as the disproportionately poor communities many serve in the nation’s cities. Until, perhaps, they are no longer there. Anyone who cares about struggling city neighborhoods needs to pay attention to a major trend unfolding across urban America. Some large black churches are moving out, and many more may follow.

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