>Survey: Americans switching faiths

>I’m too tired to actually blog about this topic extensively. Here is the link I found on CNN’s homepage.

The U.S. Religious Landscape Survey estimates the United States is 78 percent Christian and about to lose its status as a majority Protestant nation, at 51 percent and slipping. More than one-quarter of American adults have left the faith of their childhood for another religion or no religion at all, the survey found. Factoring in moves from one stream or denomination of Protestantism to another, the number rises to 44 percent. One in four adults ages 18 to 29 claim no affiliation with a religious institution.

The survey interviewed 35,000 adults and was release by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.

Here’s another finding that was intriguing:

The Roman Catholic Church has lost more members than any faith tradition because of affiliation swapping, the survey found. While nearly one in three Americans were raised Catholic, fewer than one in four say they’re Catholic today. That means roughly 10 percent of all Americans are ex-Catholics. The share of the population that identifies as Catholic, however, has remained fairly stable in recent decades thanks to an influx of immigrant Catholics, mostly from Latin America. Nearly half of all Catholics under 30 are Hispanic, the survey found.

As an Agnostic, I can identify with the one in four 18 to 29-year-olds not claiming a religious affiliation or belief. I was raised as a Christian (no denomination) and went to church often (well, not that often. I lived with my mom and she didn’t start going back to church until I was in college. My dad goes to church every Sunday. His family is very religious). Religion was a big part of my family’s life growing up.

However, I always felt disconnected from religion. While I sat in church, I would agree with the sermons and feel “okay.” But when I went home, that good feeling never carried over. Now, I know some of you would say that I just didn’t let the Word sink in or that I didn’t have enough faith.

Then, I begin to question the necessity of religion in my life. Why should I put my faith in some unknown force? What’s wrong with relying on myself to get things done? I’m not here to criticize another person’s faith. By all means, I will protect your right to practice any religion they please.

My intent is not to get bogged down in the religion debate. However, if you feel the need to tell me off and tell me that I’m misinformed, then that’s fine as well. I’ll accept any comments or criticisms.

I’m just curious: have you changed faiths or religious beliefs? If so, what was your thought process behind the change? How has your friends and family reacted to your change?