PRINCETON, N.J., Feb. 3 (UPI) -- The average religiousness of U.S. states varies widely, with Mississippi the most religious and Vermont the least religious last year, Gallup said.
The most religious states were in the South, except for Utah, and the least religious states were in New England and the West, results of a "State of the States" survey released Monday indicated.
In its survey, Gallup classified Americans as very religious if they said religion is an important part of their daily lives and they attend religious services every week or nearly every week.
Mississippi had 61 percent of its residents saying they were very religious, 1 percentage point more than Utah. The two were followed by Alabama, Louisiana, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Arkansas, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Kentucky.
On the other side of the ledger, Vermont, with 22 percent of its residents saying they were religious, was the least religious state, followed by New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Oregon, Nevada, Washington, Connecticut, Hawaii and the District of Columbia.
The Princeton, N.J., polling agency said the latest poll indicated about seven in 10 Americans were classified as very or moderately religious.
Results are based on nationwide telephone interviews with 174,699 adults conducted Jan. 2-Dec. 29, 2013, on the Gallup Daily tracking survey. The margin of error for the overall sample is 1 percentage point.