Fastest growing group in religious circles? The 'Nones'

  • Article by: ROSE FRENCH , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 15, 2012 - 9:10 AM

Nearly 20 percent of U.S. adults -- some 46 million -- claim no religious affiliation.

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dtmonkeyboyOct. 14, 1210:07 PM

I am a lifelong Catholic...even majored in theology, but over the past decade I've become very suspect of religion. I believe and worship Jesus, but the organized religion I see seems so far from his teachings... I guess I am a none as well.

njoylife303Oct. 14, 1210:12 PM

I beg to differ with this..."The decline in churchgoing is cause for concern -- and not just for churches, Thumma said. It could mean a decrease in charitable activities -- "like voting, like giving to charities, walking old ladies across the street." Firstly, voting is NOT a charitable act. It is a right given to all American citizens. Secondly, people who don't believe in a god or a religion are still people who give to charity (often times more because they are open to so many different charities). Finally, walking old ladies across the street is simply good manners and respect for elders. That is taught in the home and not just in a building dedicated to a certain religion.

loop80Oct. 14, 1210:21 PM

"The decline in churchgoing is cause for concern -- and not just for churches, Thumma said. It could mean a decrease in charitable activities -- "like voting, like giving to charities, walking old ladies across the street."" Every study that has been done refutes this idea. "Nones" give more income to a broader spectrum of charities, not just to people they know and charities. Why? Because these people know that only people can impact the lives of others, not boogie-men in the sky.

loop80Oct. 14, 1210:24 PM

"There was a time when Sunday was the sacred time, and the vast majority of Americans were Christian," Thumma said. "And now, malls are open, you can buy liquor, all the kids have soccer and baseball. What it means is church has to compete with all of these other activities for meaning for the family." If these "actiivities" truly "compete" for meaning in the family, perhaps those families really don't believe as strongly as you assume.

user1962Oct. 14, 1210:26 PM

People are leaving the churches because of their stances on social issues, and the church's response is to do more evangelizing? Maybe the churches should consider changing some of their stances.

gwbuddyOct. 14, 1210:28 PM

I'd say that people are "Waking Up" to fact that Religion ISN'T good for you! The Bible says: "I Once Was A Child . . . But, Then I Became A Man, And Put Away Childish Things." One of those "Childish Things" is: RELIGION. That has caused more Strife, Suffering, Wars, and Other Problems, throughout the entire world! Too many RELIGION names to list in this blog posting. So, RELIGIOUS "Leaders" are concerned that the number of their "Followers" is decreasing? I wonder why. Probably because those "Leaders" won't be able to "Control" people as much, or "Fleece" them out of money. Both of those things are completely CONTRARY to what the Bible teaches. I applaud the fact that more people are managing to escape from the evil clutches of RELIGION.

luxaeternaOct. 14, 1210:32 PM

Extremely divisive issues like the marriage amendment are only going to make things worse for the churches that have supported it so adamantly.

asmithe2Oct. 14, 1210:42 PM

Archbishop Neinstadt is helping grow the religion of the nones by suggesting that a literal translation of a few passages of the bible is more important than sharing the overall message. I left organized religion long ago when it became clear to me that the church is more interested in the organized part than they are the religion. I don't need a fancy building and a self-appointed interpreter to talk to my god.

nodon7Oct. 14, 1210:53 PM

This is such wonderful news. Maybe there is hope for humanity after all. Stop mindlessly giving to and supporting organizations like the ones in question, and start thinking for yourself. Wonderful!

viktorvaughnOct. 14, 1211:54 PM

Religion is too often just one more way for a few to control the many. It's true whether it's middle eastern Ayatollahs governing the social lives of young girls or a Catholic Archbishop seeking to enshrine his theological interpretations in the Minnesota Constitution. To accept such a top-down form of spirituality you either have to be passive and complacent or naive to the fallibility of religious leaders. The Catholic sex-abuse cover-up (and many similar scandals in protestant churches) pulled the infallibility wool off of many eyes.

Even stranger is the perversion of the fundamental message of Jesus. Charity, hospitality, humbleness, unconditional love, acceptance, and non-violence has been morphed into a pompous self-righteousness more reminiscent of the pharisees Jesus stood up against. And don't get me started on the money-changers in the temple. This "I got mine, eff you" prosperity gospel would have Jesus storming in and overturning their tables. Which, come to think of it, may be just what many churches need right about now...


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