Advertisement

Belief in God found in decline

1/4
Belief in God found in decline
Pope Benedict XVI celebrates Easter Mass in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican on April 8, 2012. A report released by the University of Chicago indicates that belief in God is declining worldwide. UPI/Stefano Spaziani | License Photo

CHICAGO, April 18 (UPI) -- Belief in God is declining gradually worldwide, with faith highest among older people, a report released by the University of Chicago Wednesday found.

The report, "Belief About God Across Time and Countries," found 13 percent of people living in the former East Germany expressed belief in God, while at the high end 94 percent of Filipinos say they have always been believers. The report said researchers found belief in God is higher among older people regardless of where they live.

Advertisement

"Belief in God has decreased in most countries, but the declines are quite modest especially when calculated on a per annum basis," said Tom W. Smith, director of the General Social Survey of the social science research organization NORC at the University of Chicago.

The data came from 30 countries in which surveys about belief in God have been taken at least twice since 1991.

RELATED Club cancels talk by Richard Dawkins

PHOTOS: 45 Religious Celebrities

The study found atheism is strongest in northwest European countries and the former Soviet states, with the exception of Poland. Belief was found to be increasing in Russia, Slovenia and Israel.

Advertisement

On average, 43 percent of those 68 and older are certain God exists, compared with 23 percent of those 27 and younger, the report said.

PHOTOS: Celebrity Mormons

"Looking at differences among age groups, the largest increases in belief in God most often occur among those 58 years of age and older," Smith said. "This suggests that belief in God is especially likely to increase among the oldest groups, perhaps in response to the increasing anticipation of mortality."

RELATED Man allowed to wear colander for ID photo

In the United States, 81 percent of those surveyed said they have always believed in God. The report said 54 percent of Americans younger than 28 said they were certain of God's existence, compared with 66 percent of the people 68 and older.

RELATED British atheists call for pope's arrest

RELATED Higher IQ linked to liberalism, atheism

RELATED Atheist billboard vandalized

RELATED Atheist group wants 'heaven' off of sign

RELATED Atheist ad removed from church property

RELATED Atheists, Christians have dueling signs

RELATED Teachers removed over holy water claims

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement