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The Protestant Decline

For what may be the first time in centuries, Protestants no longer make up the majority of Americans. Those claiming to be Protestants have slid to 48% in the United States, down from 52% in 2007. 22% of Americans claim Roman Catholicism, just edging out the “nones,” a category that has been surging in recent years. 20% of Americans, primarily the under-30 set, claim no religious affiliation. The study pointed out that “none” needn’t necessarily mean “atheist” as much as it implies a dissatisfaction with mainline denominations. Either way, it’s a major religious, cultural and even political shift in a country for which religious freedom is a benchmark …

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