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Case Study



The spiritual landscape of our country has changed dramatically in the past 50 years. Evidence can be seen in dropping church attendance and decreasing knowledge of the Bible. According to a USA Today article, these people are exiting churches and going “to religious nowhere”:

“The ‘nones’—Americans who are unaffiliated with brand-name religion—are the new major force in American faith[…]

“ ‘Nones,’ at 22.8% of the U.S. (up from 16% just eight years ago) run second only to evangelicals (25.4%) and ahead of Catholics (20.8%) in religious market share.”

A Public Religion Research Institute report titled “America’s Changing Christian Landscape” details the dramatic decline in people who claim affiliation with any particular religious group:

No religious group is larger than those who are unaffiliated from religion. Nearly one in four (24%) Americans are now religiously unaffiliated.

Roughly one-third (34%) of religiously unaffiliated Americans are also under 30.

Young adults are more than three times as likely as seniors to identify as religiously unaffiliated (38% vs. 12%, respectively).

With the religiously unaffiliated group’s staggering growth figures—accounting for more than one-fifth of the U.S. population, according the Pew Research—Christians need to reassess their current approaches to evangelism. What worked in the past is not working today.

The gospel is still the answer, of course, but the way we present it needs to take into consideration what we now know from the PPRI report and elsewhere. Timothy Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church, challenges us to share the gospel in light of this new normal:

“There is a way of telling the gospel that makes people say, ‘I don’t believe it’s true, but I wish it were.’ You have to get to the beauty of it, and then go back to the reasons for it.”

Equipping Christians to share the beauty of God’s Story in culturally relevant ways is core to Spread Truth’s mission. To effectively reach the Nones, we must first know them and understand how they are processing faith issues.

Understanding the spiritual landscape is why Spread Truth is so effective in multiplying the gospel reach of Christians worldwide. Our expertise is a hope-filled answer to the PPRI report’s disheartening statistics. That’s why your giving through Spread Truth is so important. Together, we can get the gospel out around the world to everyone, everywhere, making a lasting difference in the spiritual landscape here at home and around the world.


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