Evangelism Research and Cultural Trends
Movie "October Baby" Gains Popularity
OCTOBER BABY earned a 91 percent positive rating from audiences on the Rotten Tomatoes movie review site, the second-highest audience score of the top 20 films currently showing. The film has earned nearly $4 million at the box office. The film tells the story of a young woman who discovers she's adopted and the survivor of an attempted abortion. [http://octoberbabymovie.net/]
Survey of Prison Chaplains Finds Religion Critical to Rehabilitation
According to a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion & Public Life, state prison chaplains consider religious counseling and other religion-based programming an important aspect of rehabilitating prisoners. Nearly three-quarters of the chaplains say they consider access to religion-related programs in prison to be "absolutely critical" to successful rehabilitation of inmates. Among chaplains working in prisons that have religion-related rehabilitation or re-entry programs, more than half say the quality of such programs has improved over the last three years and inmate participation has increased. [http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/features-the-religion-world/2012/03/22/survey-of-prison-chaplains-finds-religion-critical-to-rehabilitation/]
Study Reveals How Americans Feel the Christian Faith Impacts Society
A 2012 study reveals that most Americans believe the Christian faith has a positive impact on society when it comes to the less fortunate being helped and children being raised with good morals. However, Americans are about as likely to feel the Christian faith has a negative impact as a positive one in the areas of racism, how the U.S. is viewed by other countries, how people view others with different beliefs and perspectives, and others. [http://www.greymatterresearch.com/index_files/Impact.htm]
Study Explores Why Some Believe, Some Don't
A new study from the University of British Columbia in Canada shows that one reason some people are less inclined to believe in God is that they choose to think analytically rather than depend on their gut feeling. The research found that religious belief is a result of intuitive thinking, which can be undermined by analytical thinking. [http://www.christianpost.com/news/why-some-believe-others-dont-new-study-offers-answer-74032/]
Equal with the Bible?
46% of Americans believe the Bible, the Quran and the Book of Mormon are different expressions of the same spiritual truths. An equal number disagree, according to a Barna Group study on behalf of the American Bible Society. 47% believe the Bible has too little influence in society today while 16% believe it has too much influence, with 37% expressing neutral opinions. 55% claim to read the Bible to be closer to God, but that's down 9% from just a year ago. And although 79% believe they are knowledgeable about the Bible, 54% were unable to correctly identify the first 5 books of the Bible. 62% of adults 66 and older believe the Bible contains everything a person needs to know about living a meaningful life. This compares with 54% in the 47-65 group, 44% among 28-46, and 34% of 18-27. 85% of U.S. households own a Bible, averaging 4.3 per household. 36% read the Bible less than once a year or never while 33% read it once a week or more. (Charisma News 4/17/12)
Revival in Iran
Despite the Iranian government's ongoing crackdown of Christians living in the primarily Islamic country, the number of Muslims converting to become Christians is growing at an explosive rate, according to Open Doors USA. Open Doors estimates there are 370,000 converted Muslims in Iran today vs. just 200 40 years ago. A house church movement within Iran is part of that revival and has triggered "many secret meetings." Although conversions are happening in all regions, most are taking place in larger cities. Iran is ranked 5th on the Open Doors 2012 World Watch List of the top 50 worst persecutors of Christians. Open Doors suggests the growth of Christianity is much the result of Iranians getting to know the real face of Islam, the official religion of Iran, and the mistrust of the people toward the government and leaders following the fraudulent 2009 presidential election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Also Iranians are very outgoing and want to speak about their faith. This is why discipleship training (with elements of outreach and communications) for Iranian believers is successful. (Christian Post 3/23/12)
Regular Bible Reader Stats
A recent LifeWay Research study finds 37% of regular Bible readers read their Bible nearly every day and typically use one primary version of the Bible. 22% read their Bible 3 to 5 times a week, 22% read it 1 or 2 times a week, 11% do so 2-3 times a month, and 8% about once a month. 75% also read along with others each month as Scripture is read in church worship services, 49% read it as part of Christian education or Sunday school classes at a church, and 42% do so as part of a small group Bible study or prayer group. On average, U.S. Bible readers personally own 3.6 copies. 84% have more than one Bible. 74% have one primary Bible they use most of the time while the other 26% tend to use different Bibles for different situations. 80% of regular Bible readers stick with one translation all or most of the time and only 20% use a variety. The higher the reader's education and household income, the less likely they are to use one primary Bible most of the time. 75% of regular Bible readers personally chose the version they use most, 19% had it selected for them, and 6% don't recall. 90% are satisfied with the version they use most for personal reading. Regular Bible readers are also often involved in other religious activities. (Charisma News 3/16/12)
77% of U.S. Protestant pastors strongly disagree with the statement, "If a person is sincerely seeking God, he/she can obtain eternity through religions other than Christianity." 7% somewhat disagree, 7% somewhat agree, 5% strongly agree, and 3% aren't sure. LifeWay Research finds Protestant parishioners weren't as unanimous. Just 48% strongly disagree, 9% disagree somewhat, 13% some-what agree, 13% strongly agree, and 16% aren't sure. Large city pastors are more likely to believe other religions lead to eternity than their counterparts in other settings. Evangelical pastors (2%) are less universalistic than mainline pastors (11%). Pastors with a graduate degree are more likely to strongly agree (7% to 3%) and less likely to strongly disagree (70% to 90%) than those with a bachelor's degree. (Facts and Trends, Spring 2012)
U.S. Church Membership Decline
The Southern Baptist Convention reports a decline in membership of 0.15% to 16,136,044 members last year, the 4th consecutive year of decline. At the same time, the Catholic Church had a membership decline of 0.44% and American Baptist Churches in the U.S. dropped 0.19%.The Assemblies of God grew 3.99% as did the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (up 1.62%) and the National Baptist Convention, U.S.A., (up 3.95%). Other churches that posted membership gains are Jehovah's Witnesses and the Seventh-day Adventist Church. However, total membership in the top 25 churches was down 1.15%. (2012 Yearbook of American & Canadian Churches)
Givers Are a Minority
Just 39% of members in most churches contribute financially. (Mega-Church Myths, Scott Thumma, Jossey Bass, 2007)
102,000 Fewer People
are occupying Churches of Christ pews since 2003, according to a new 21st Christian study. This is a 6.2% decline. Also, the denomination's total number of churches is now 12,447, down 708 or 5.4% from 9 years ago. (Christian Chronicle 2/12)
Religion Can Influence Suicide Rates
This finding is based on data from Prussia in the 1800s when the country was divided into Catholic and Protestant regions and local authorities kept good records on the causes of death. At the time, the vast majority of Prussians adhered to the predominant religion in their region. Suicide rates in the Protestant regions were 3 times higher than in the Catholic regions. Their study concludes Protestantism itself increases suicide rates compared to Catholicism. Their study cannot answer why this is the case, but they offer three hypotheses: 1) Protestants are more individualistic, or place greater emphasis upon individual autonomy, whereas Catholics are more communitarian, or place greater emphasis upon church communities. 2) Catholic teachings on suicide are stricter and those teachings become internalized among Catholics. 3) Protestants do not recognize the sacrament of confession. Since suicide is the only sin that could never be confessed to a priest, a Catholic who finds confession important to avoiding Hell may be less inclined to commit suicide. (World 3/27/12)
State of the Plate
Churches suffered from plummeting donations after the recession began in 2008. But in the past year, a majority of congregations experienced giving increases because of a better economy, higher attendance, and more church teaching on giving, according to the 4th annual State of the Plate survey. Trends in 2011 included higher budgets, which brought more church spending on salaries, missions, facilities, and benevolence. Trends also included greater attention to fiscal transparency and board governance and a rise in electronic giving via cell phone apps and automatic bank withdrawals. 51% of churches saw giving increase in 2011 vs. 43% in 2010 and 36% in 2009. A collaborative research project by MAXIMUM Generosity, Christianity Today, and ECFA found giving increases were greatest among larger and heartland churches. Among churches that saw giving increases, 50% attributed it to higher attendance. 42% credited financial/generosity teaching initiatives. As a result, churches are allocating the extra funds to staff pay raises (40.3%), missions (36.5%), church buildings (35.3%), and benevolence (31.1%). (State of the Plate Survey, Brian Kluth, 3/27/12)
Disdain for pregnant women in the workplace is at a record high in the U.S. Pregnancy discrimination cases are on the rise. In the past 10 years, the EEOC has resolved pregnancy discrimination cases totaling $150.5 million in damages for over 52,000 women. (LifeSite News 4/16/12)
Most & Least Religious States
59% of Mississippians are very religious and 11% nonreligious, while 23% of Vermonters are very religious and 58% are nonreligious. New Hampshire ties Vermont with 23% classified as very religious and slightly fewer (52%) nonreligious. Rounding out the 10 most religious states are Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, Oklahoma and Utah. By contrast, the 10 least religious states are Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Alaska, Oregon, Nevada, Washington, District of Columbia and New York. (Church Report 3/29/12)
American's View of China
Americans continue to believe in overwhelming numbers that China is an economic threat to the U.S. 25% still regard the Asian giant as an enemy of America, according to a new Rasmussen Reports survey. Just 9% of American adults view China as a U.S. ally. 25% view China as an enemy, while 64% rate it somewhere in between. (Rasmussen Reports 3/20/12)
Future of the Internet
A new Pew Research survey about the future of the Internet finds many young people are growing up hyper-connected to each other and the mobile Web. They are counting on the Internet as their external brain to be nimble, making them quick-acting multitaskers who will do well in key respects. Many analysts argue it is a myth that Millennials have a special aptitude for digital media because they've grown up digital. Good research has shown that even especially bright kids are less productive when multitasking, a finding resisted by plenty of grown-ups as well. The immersive nature of 24/7 connectedness creates the illusion that Millennials can somehow tap into a form of collective intelligence just by being online while looking impatiently for messages every 3 minutes. (Center for Media Research Brief 3/14/12)
43% of American adults have gone through a full week without paying for anything with cash or coins, according to a new Rasmussen Reports survey. Only slightly more (47%) have not done so. (Rasmussen Reports 4/11/12)
could rise as high as 15% by late next year or early 2014, says the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) if the Federal Reserve is unable to drain more than 25% of the reserves in the banking system. The threat is being driven by the unprecedented amount of money the Federal Reserve pumped into the economy to combat the recent recession. To combat inflation, the Fed now has to drain substantial excess reserves from the banking system, which may not be possible. (One News Now 3/24/12)
Population Growth Stalled
The sluggish economy has put the brakes on population growth in the U.S., according to recent government reports. Since 2009, the population increased by only 0.7% a year, the lowest increase since the Great Depression. The drop is due to fewer births and decreased immigration. People are also delaying having children because of the poor economy. "It's an indicator of an unhealthy economy," said Carl Haub, demographer for the Population Reference Bureau. (Charisma News 3/22/12)
Grads Not Ready
A new Rasmussen Reports survey finds only 21% of American adults think most of those graduating high school have the skills needed for college. 64% disagree and say graduates don't have the necessary skills for college. 16% are not sure. However, Americans tend to believe students who are home-schooled learn more than those in the public schools. (Rasmussen Reports 3/27/12)
The government of India, in October 2011, announced the launch of the Aakash tablet, which will be sold to students for $35 and the public for $60, a fraction of the cost of the iPad and other devices. The goal: to give students a way to read books and other items digitally, as well as to be connected to the larger world. (Pentecostal Evangel 4/12)
No Deduction Gift
Nearly 2 in 3 Americans believe removing the charitable gift tax deduction would decrease giving to non-profit organizations, according to a new Gray Matter Research survey. 30% feel there would be no change while 6% think giving would rise. (ECFA Church Tax, Legal and Financial Updates 3/27/12)
(consumers in their 20s) switch media venues about 27 times per nonworking hour -- the equivalent of more than 13 times during a standard half-hour TV show according to a recent Time Inc study by Innerscope Research. In contrast, digital immigrants (consumers who grew up with TV, radio and print and adapted to new technologies) switched media venues just 17 times per nonworking hour. Put another way, natives switch about 35% more than immigrants. (Advertising Age 4/9/12)
Parents Prefer Print Books
Two-thirds of U.S. parents indicate they would prefer to have their children reading print books than e-books. (Adweek 3/26/12)
There are now 146 million "Social Networkers" in the U.S. -- adults age 18 and older who have used a social networking site at least once in the last month. 36% use it to stay in touch, 25% for entertainment, 20% for information, 15% for self expression and 4% for dating. (Center for Media Research Brief 4/16/12)
63% of U.S. teens were text-messaging daily as of 7/11, up from 54% in 9/09. The volume of texting has also grown from 50 messages a day to 60 for the typical teen. Much of that increase is among older teens (14-17) ramping up from a median of 60 texts in 2009 to 100 last year. The daily exchange of texts among almost two-thirds of teens far surpasses other types of daily communication, including calling by cell phone (39%), face-to-face socializing outside of school (35%), social network messaging (29%), instant messaging (22%), talking via landline (19%), and emailing (6%). (Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project 3/12)
An estimated 15% of children under 11 own a mobile phone, and that number is expected to grow to 22% by 2015. (Adweek 3/26/12)
Deeper Digital Divide
When Gen-Yers communicate, they are likely to do it through text or video, not voice. They think e-mail is slow and dumb. They don't sit and watch TV; they snack on video as they are doing other things. Many of them don't have landlines or watch normal TV. (Marketing Daily 4/18/12)
Most Music Free
Only 42% of music that is consumed every year is paid for today; 58% is acquired free. As a result, the Christian music industry is about half the size it was 10 years ago. (Christian Retailing 4/12)
Too Much Information
People and Transitions:
In an effort to thoroughly vet job applicants, some companies and government agencies are going beyond reviewing a person's social networking profile by asking to log in as the user to get a look at their personal profile page. Questions have been raised about the legality of the practice, which is also the focus of proposed legislation in IL and MD that would forbid public agencies from asking for access to social networks. In response, many Facebook users have their profiles set to private, making them available only to selected people or certain networks. Some employers also now require workers to sign non-disparagement agreements. (AP, USA Today 3/20/12)
- Painter of Light" Thomas Kinkade, 54, died 4/6/12 of natural causes at his home near San Francisco.
- Christian singer Jason Crabb won artist and male vocalist of the year awards at the 43rd annual Dove Awards. (Church Report 4/21/12)
- Natalie Grant was named female artist of the year and Laura Story won song of the year with 'Blessings. (Church Report 4/21/12)
A new Barna Group study examined how pastors of Protestant churches plan to improve the strategic, operational, and administrative aspects of their ministries. Pastors are most interested in getting clarity about their organization's vision and mission. 59% are "definitely" going to assess their church's vision and mission in the next year. 38% also plan to assess their church's reputation in the community and 31% plan to measure the demographic and spiritual needs of their community. With regard to ministry capacity, 25% of pastors intend to focus on safety and security issues while another 25% will revamp the budgeting and spending process. 22% will invest in facilities and equipment for children, 19% in audio and visual equipment, 18% in facilities and equipment for youth and teens, and 18% in technology and digital media. Although 72% rely on at least one outside consultant each year, getting such assistance for fundraising and staffing were generally perceived to be rare needs. Just 6% will definitely "work with an organization to help increase giving" and only 2% will "hire a search firm to help them hire the right person." (Barna Update 2/27/12)
World's Largest Congregation
There are big churches, and then there's the Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul, South Korea. Started with 5 people in 1958, it puts the "mega" in megachurch with a membership of 800,000. On a typical day 200,000 will attend 1 of 7 services along with another 200,000 to 300,000 watching on TV in adjoining buildings or satellite branches. The main sanctuary holds 21,000 people. Each service has its own orchestra, choir, and pastor and there are hundreds of assistants. Each service is translated into 16 different languages. The church has missionaries in 67 different countries. At 4:30 each morning people come to church to pray for 1–2 hours and all night on Fridays. Most members tithe 10% of their income to the church. 60 years ago, there were about 50,000 Christians in South Korea vs. more than 10 million today. Almost 1 in 10 was baptized in the Yoido Full Gospel Church. (Religion & Ethics Newsweekly 1/27/12)
Church Foreclosures, something extremely rare in America for decades, represents a new wave of distressed property seizures triggered by the 2008 financial crash. Since 2010, 270 churches have been sold after defaulting on their loans, with 90% of those sales coming after a lender-triggered foreclosure. In 2008, 24 religious foreclosure sales occurred. In 2011, a record 138 churches were sold by banks and trends show no sign religious foreclosures are abating. All denominations have been affected, but small to medium size churches have been hit the worst. Most have been purchased by other churches. (Church Report 3/9/12)
Parents Resist iPads
According to an iYogi Insights survey, 67% of parents are not willing to buy their kids an iPad. 67% of these parents would rather buy a more traditional computing device (desktop, laptop, or net book), and 27% preferred to buy an e-reader. Of parental concerns: 50% say owning an iPad would keep their kids from enjoying the outdoors and 34% worried the devices would keep them from making more friends. (Marketing Daily 2/29/12)
Marriage is Best
Though polygamy has existed throughout history and is still accepted in some pockets of the world, a team of authors working in the fields of anthropology, economics, and psychology write that it doesn't benefit children, women, individuals, or cultures the way married monogamous relationships do. (Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society)
Among unmarried couples living together in the U.S., such relationships are more than twice as likely to dissolve as marriages. Likewise, two-thirds of couples living together separated by the time their child turns 10. (NY Times 2/17/12)
Comparing long-term studies worldwide, Marriage and Religion Research Institute's Patrick reports among U.S. children, 47% do not reach the age of 17 without a family split. Divorce can decrease the ability of a child to function well in five areas of society; family, school, church, marketplace, and government. In contrast, children who have an intact married family are less likely to: Think their father is not warm and loving; get in a fight with a family member; lie, steal or damage school property; hurt someone, get drunk or skip school; have sex before age 14 and have an unwed pregnancy; and have a 2.9 grade point average or higher. (Baptist Press 3/2/12)
Coming Generational Change
Today 41% of births in the U.S. are outside marriage and 53% for children born to women under 30, according to 2009 National Center for Health Statistics. 73% of black children are born outside marriage, compared with 53% of Latinos and 29% of whites. Educational differences are growing as well. 92% of college-educated women are married when they give birth vs. 62% of women with some post-secondary schooling and 43% of women with a high school diploma or less. Among mothers of all ages, 59% are married when they have children. But the surge of births outside marriage among younger women (nearly two-thirds of children in the U.S. are born to mothers under 30) is both a symbol of the transforming family and a hint of coming generational change. (NY Times 2/17/12)
Teens View on Christ's Return
49% of Christian teens don't believe Jesus will return within their lifetimes. 13% refuse to even venture an opinion on the subject. Non-denominational youth are most likely to say they expect Jesus to return in their lifetimes (54%). 64% of Catholic students are convinced Christ will not return in their lifetimes. Among Christian students who are skeptical of the Bible's trust-worthiness, 77% reject the idea that Christ will return before they die. (The Jesus Survey, Mike Nappa, Baker Books 2013)
Do Christian Teens Read the Bible?
73% of Christian teens indicate they value daily Bible study as a part of the Christian life. Of these, 31% "strongly agree" with this view. Yet, nearly all Christian teens fail to open their Bibles outside church. A meager 5% study it on a daily basis. More than 1 in 4 Christian students in a church youth group actually reject the idea that Christians have an obligation to study the Bible daily. Belief in the trustworthiness of Scripture has enormous impact on whether or not Christian students place value on studying the Bible daily. Among the overall U.S. youth group population, only 31% believe daily Bible study is very important, although among teens who believe the Bible is trustworthy, that number more than doubles to 63%. (The Jesus Survey, Mike Nappa, Baker Books 2003)
Why Teens Leave the Faith
A 2007 LifeWay Research study found that 70% of young adults who attended church in high school subsequently stopped attending church for at least a year during their college years. Only 20 percent of those who left the church had planned on doing so while in high school. Surveys by Barna and Gallup have found similar dropout rates, leaving youth and teens experts wondering: What can be done? A new longitudinal study of 500 youth group graduates may provide some answers. Conducted by the Fuller Youth Institute at Fuller Theological Seminary, the study followed the graduates through their years in college or vocational school. The results are compiled in a book, "Sticky Faith: Everyday ideas to build lasting faith in your kids" (Zondervan). Their view of the gospel matters, as well as their connection to the church body, but one result that might surprise some church leaders is that teens who feel the freedom to express doubts about their faith tend to keep their faith. (Baptist Press, 2/20/12)
Religion & Wellbeing
Americans who are very religious have a higher wellbeing rating than those who are moderately so or not at all religious, finds a new Gallup poll. "Very religious" respondents earned a wellbeing index of 69.2, compared to 63.7 for the "moderately religious" and 65.3 for the "not religious." Overall, 41% of those questioned said they were "very religious," 28.3% self-described as "moderately religious," and 30.7% were "non-religious." (Church Report 2/17/12)
Losing Ability to Think?
There is a good chance young people growing up in today's always-wired world will eventually become bright, nimble decision makers—if they don't wind up intellectual lightweights unable to concentrate long enough to chew over a good book, according to a new Pew Research Center survey of technology researchers. 55% agreed that in 2020 the brains of young people would be "wired" differently from those over 35, with good results for finding answers quickly and without shortcomings in their mental processes. But 42% were pessimistic, agreeing that in 2020 young technology users would be easily distracted, would lack deep thinking skills, and would thirst only for instant gratification. (Reuters 2/29/12)
Advertising's Influences Children
6-month-old babies can visualize corporate logos and mascots, according to the Center for a New American Dream. Brand loyalty begins as early as age 2. The average 3-year-old recognizes 100 different brand logos. Toddlers cannot distinguish a commercial from a TV show. The same is true for stories and puzzles vs. an advertisement. It isn't until age 8 that kids begin to realize advertising can be untruthful or misleading. In 2008, $15 billion was spent on advertising to kids in the U.S. A third of young children have a TV in their bedroom, as do 66% of pre-teens and teens. 40% of 3-month-olds and 90% of kids 2 and younger regularly watch TV, DVDs, or videos.National advertisers claim children under 3 represent a $20 billion market. (Focus on the Family–Parenting 3/2/12)
Age of Independence
67% of parents believe children should become financially independent by 22, while 31% say it need not occur until 25 or later, according to a Pew survey. In 1993, 80% of parents said children should be independent by 22. (Church Report 2/9/12)
Best Financial Advice Source
More Americans are willing to take advice from Donald Trump (50%), a man whose companies have filed for bankruptcy at least 4 times, than from the Bible (32%), the bestselling book of all time, finds a study by Harris Interactive for the American Bible Society. Yet the Bible has more than 2,000 verses that relate to money. 1 in 10 Americans 18–34 would be most inclined to take financial advice from Kim Kardashian. 86% do not follow what the Bible says about money management. 24% who do not follow what the Bible says about money think they would have more money if they followed its advice. (Church Report 3/6/12)
Strategic Services research finds Facebook captures 1 in every 11 Internet visits in the U.S. as well as 1 in every 5 page views. The average visit time on Facebook is 20 minutes. Its audience skews slightly more female than the online population as a whole. There is a remarkably even age-range spread among users. Facebook is the most searched term in the U.S., and Facebook-related terms account for 14% of the top search clicks. 96% of visitors to the social site were returning visitors in January 2012. Facebook ranks in the top 2 websites in every market except China, where Sina Weibo, Baidu Zhidao, and Renren are the dominant social networks. (Center for Media Research Brief 2/27/12)
Counting on Uncle Sam
The share of Americans' income that comes from government benefit programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security more than doubled over the last 4 decades, rising from 8% in '69 to 18% in '09. (NY Times 2/11/12)
Currently 21% of U.S. adults have at least 1 tattoo, up from the 16% and 14% in 2003 and 2008. 31% of adults in the western states have at least 1 compared to 21% in the East, 21% in the Midwest, and 18% in the South. 38% 30–39s have a tattoo compared to 30% of 25–29s, 22% of 18–24s, 27% of 40–49s, 11% 50–64s and just 5% of those 65 and older. For the first time, women are slightly more likely than men to have a tattoo (23% vs. 19%). Among those with a tattoo, 86% have never regretted getting one and 30% say it makes them feel more sexy, 25% more rebellious, 21% more attractive or strong, 16% more spiritual, 9% more healthy, 8% more intelligent, and 5% more athletic. However, among those without tattoos, 45% say people with tattoos are less attractive or 39% less sexy, 27% less intelligent, 25% less healthy, and 25% less spiritual. (Harris Interactive 2/23/12)
- 86% of Americans who are active in religious groups are cell phone users vs. 80% of those who are not active.
- 75% of Americans who are active in religious groups are e-mail users vs. 68% of those who are not active.
- 75% of church members read the Bible electronically (PC, laptop, smart phone, iPad, e-reader, etc.)
- 92% of U.S. churches make their financial statements available upon request to their members.
- 89% of U.S. churches provide copies of their annual budget to their congregation or make them available upon request.
- 86% of U.S. church boards are made up of 5 or more people, with at least 3 of those people not a pastor or staff member, or related to either.
- Millennials are the least religious generation in American history, according to researcher Thom Rainer.
- Between 1968 and 2006, giving received for the church budget decreased from 2.45% to just over 2.17%.
- Giving in the U.S. for external benevolence causes dropped from 0.66% to just over 0.37%.
- 82 million U.S. adults regularly attend church.
- It is estimated religious lobbyists or religion-related advocacy organizations in Washington D.C. spend $390 million annually trying to influence national public policy.
- 79% of Americans who are active in religious groups are Internet users vs. 74% of those not involved.
- Amazon now has about 65% of the e-book market, while Barnes & Noble has 20% and Apple 10%.
- 1 in 3 new tablet owners are Millennial women.
- 35% of adult Millennials own a tablet.
- Nearly half of all male Gen-Yers own a tablet -- more than any other gender/generation cohort.
- Over 80% of employees are more likely to trust a firm where CEOs communicate through social channels.
- 71% of Millennials share opinions online because they feel other consumers value those opinions.
- 51% of Millennials want to start a business in the next 5 years.
- 33% of U.S. consumers expect to eat more healthful snacks in the coming year.
- American businesses spent $171 billion on advertising in 2010.
- The American love for pets triggered a 40% increase in chain pet store numbers between 2005 and 2010.
- 54% of U.S. Hispanics say the economy has hurt Latinos more than other groups.
- 29% of U.S. Hispanics are under water on their mortgage.
News and Trends information compiled and edited by Gary Foster, President of Gary D Foster Consulting, a firm that assists Christian ministries and product companies in solving management, marketing, donor/customer service and product development problems. Contact Gary at: 419.238.4082, GFosterCns@rmi.net or go to www.GaryDFoster.com.