Saudi-owned satellite TV channel Al-Arabiya runs a Reuters story reporting on religion in America. Based on a report released Monday from the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies, the number of American Muslims is rising rapidly, and now number 2.6 million.
The report gives a good overview of the reach of all major religions, including many of the smaller Protestant denominations. The maps and charts are informative. Data was collected in 2010.
Number of Muslims in the U.S. rises sharply, claims census
Reuters — Chicago
American Muslims grew in number over the past decade, outnumbering Jews for the first time in most of the Midwest and part of the South, while most mainline churches lost adherents, according to a census of American religions released on Tuesday.
The number of Muslim adherents rose to 2.6 million in 2010 from 1 million in 2000, fueled by immigration and conversions, said Dale Jones, a researcher who worked on the study by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies.
“Christians are the largest group in every state, but some of the things we found interesting was the growth of the Mormons, who reported the largest numerical gain in 26 states,” said Jones, who presented the report to a conference in Chicago.
The number of Mormons, whose Utah-based church’s formal name is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, grew by 45 percent to 6.1 million in 2010, according to the census, which asked 236 religions to count their own adherents. Family members of adherents were generally included in the numbers.
Roughly 55 percent of Americans attend services with enough regularity to be counted, according to the data. By comparison, most surveys estimate roughly 85 percent of Americans profess religious faith, though they may not attend services.
Some 158 million Americans were classified as “unclaimed” by any religion in the survey.