Americans Are Abandoning Christianity


Churches are closing down at a rapid pace as younger Americans abandon religion, the Guardian reported on January 22. Lifeway Research has conducted studies on church attendance for years. Churches close down every year, but for the first time, more churches have closed down than have opened.

  • In 2019, the latest available year, 4,500 churches closed and 3,000 opened.
  • Church attendance is at 85 percent of prepandemic levels.
  • In 2022, only 67 percent of Americans attended church at least once, down from 75 percent prepandemic.

Young Americans: The lowest numbers are among young people. Lifeway found that only 30 percent of young adults who had regularly attended church throughout high school, continued doing so once they graduated. This largely stems from a disagreement with church stances on politics and social issues.

The rise of the nonreligious has been a major trend in America in recent years. Our 2015 article on the subject states:

The 2012 Pew Forum, “‘Nones’ on the Rise,” tells us that the typical none is male, a liberal or moderate and a Democrat, not necessarily an atheist, not hostile to organized religion but doesn’t want to belong to one, supportive of abortion and same-sex “marriage,” white, and more than likely lives in the Western United States. When interviewed, many nones insist they still believe in God. Yet the foundation of their belief is definitely not traditional—or biblical. The nones have a murky belief system that is simply a reflection of the secular society around us. …

Herein lies the danger for nones. When people pick and choose truth—then essentially there is no truth! What truth do nones pick and choose about God? We can be fairly certain of what truth they would not pick: Nobody would choose a God of power and authority who requires obedience to spiritual law and adherence to absolute truth! Nones don’t care a whit about absolutes. Nones would only choose a God who thinks just like them.

Actually isn’t this the number one problem in our American and Western society as a whole? We have interpreted freedom of religion, and freedom in general, to mean that we can pick and choose to believe what we want, and act like we want—without regard to law or constituted government authority.

This trend is a great danger to America. To understand, read our article “America’s Crumbling Religious Landscape.”