Pew Study Shows Latter-day Saints Hold Steady Amid Decline of Christianity in US

A recent Pew Research study shows the number of people who describe themselves as Latter-day Saints has held steady in the US over the past decade, while research shows a general decline in other Christian religions and Christianity overall.

The study, which was published on Pew Research's website on Oct. 17, shows a steady decline in those who identify as Christian over the past decade, from 77 percent to 65 percent, while those who identify as agnostic, atheist, or "nothing in particular" has grown steadily. 

According to the study, those who identify as "nothing in particular" has grown from 17 percent in 2009 to 26 percent, atheist from 2 percent in 2009 to 4 percent, and agnostic from 3 percent in 2009 to 5 percent. Those who identify as Catholic has dropped from 23 percent to 20 percent in the past decade and the number of those who identify as Protestant from 51 percent to 43 percent. 

However, the study also showed that the number of people in the US who identify as Latter-day Saint has held steady, staying at 2 percent throughout the decade. 

An article published by Vox earlier this year also shares that while most Christian religions are seeing a decline, Latter-day Saints are holding steady and why that might be. 

► You'll also like: Vox: Most Churches Are Losing Members Fast — but Not the Latter-day Saints. Here’s Why.

In theVox article, author Daniel Cox shares that the reason for the Church's steadiness during a continued trend of a decline in Christianity in the US is its focus on family. "Few religious communities have made the development and maintenance of traditional family structures such a central priority," Cox wrote.

This emphasis on family is crucial in maintaining faith traditions, Cox says. 

"The structure of Mormon families is hugely advantageous when it comes to passing along religious identity," Cox wrote. "Family life has always been a critical source of religious vitality. It is the crucible within which religious identity is formed, rituals are learned and practiced, and beliefs take shape."

Lead image from ComeUntoChrist.org
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