By Christy Barritt
America Becoming Post-Christian
Even though most Americans refer to themselves as Christians, there is an upward trend in post-Christian beliefs and behaviors, according to a new study released by the Barna Group.
The study analyzed nearly 43,000 interviews and found that more than 70 percent of American adults considered themselves Christians. On the group’s post-Christian scale, only 63 percent of Christians ranked low. Twenty-eight percent ranked at moderately post-Christian and nine percent were considered highly post-Christian.
The study used 15 faith-related metrics to draw these conclusions. Some of these factors included the number of people who considered themselves Christians but who had not prayed in a year (18 percent), hadn’t read their Bible in a week (57 percent), and had not been to church in a year (33 percent).
The trend, according to many, shows a disturbing trend in our culture. ”People who effortlessly self-describe as ‘Christian’ may live like practical atheists in most other parts of their lives,” said David Kinnaman, president of Barna Group.
Most Christian Ministers Don’t Think Global Warming Is Man-Made
A new study by LifeWay Research shows that 54 percent of protestant ministers reject the notion that “global warming is real and man-made.”
The results showed diversity along political party lines. Seventy-five percent of Democratically-aligned faith leaders strongly agreed with the sentiment that global warming was both real and man-made, while only 20 percent of independents, and 7 percent of Republican ministers said they believed the same.
The study also found that ministers in large cities are most likely to agree at 32 percent. Southern ministers are less likely to strongly agree with the statement at only 18 percent, while ministers in the Northeast come in at 30 percent.
Still, 63 percent of ministers reported having active recycling programs at their church.
Abstinence Education Eliminated from Federal Budget
Funding for the Sexual Risk Avoidance abstinence education program was cut by the president from the proposed federal budget for 2014.
The National Abstinence Education Association issued an alert, informing supporters that President Barack Obama had eliminated funding for the program and instead advised the Department of Health and Human Services to redistribute a portion of the Title V monies to a new program focusing on contraception.
“It’s troubling that the president would want to prevent students from receiving the encouragement and skills to avoid sexual risk,” said NAEA president Valerie Huber.
The NAEA is asking Congress to ignore the president’s recommendation and to choose “the common sense position of supporting SRA programs and the positive results they are achieving among youth.”
Army Reservists Briefed on Christian “Extremists”
During a training session on extremism and extremist organizations, a U.S. Army Reservist group was told that evangelical Christians were at the top of the list of groups to watch out for.
Alliance Defending Freedom obtained the Power Point presentation, which listed Christians, Catholics, and Mormons alongside the Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaeda, and Hamas.
The text defined “extremist” groups as those with beliefs, attitudes, feelings, and actions far removed from the ordinary.
The soldiers were also restricted from aligning themselves with any of these extremist groups. They were instructed not to take a leadership role within these organizations or be seen at public rallies with them.
The Archdiocese for Military Services chastised the Army for the presentation. The Army Chief of Chaplains investigated the presentation and found it to be an isolated incident that was not condoned by the Department of Army.
Christy Barritt is an award-winning author, freelance writer, and speaker living in Chesapeake, Virginia. She and her husband Scott have two sons.