organized religion

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11 Least Religious Cities in the US

Yup, Sin City makes the list

(Newser) - Haven't yet found God and don't plan to? You might feel right at home in Portland, San Francisco, or Seattle. Those are the least religious cities in the country, according to a new survey from the Public Religion Research Institute picked up by MarketWatch . Here are the 11... More »

Want Good Mental Health? Get Religion

Joining a religious organization has a bigger impact than volunteering or sport

(Newser) - Attending a church, synagogue, or mosque may be better for one's mental health than engaging in sports, furthering one's education, or volunteering. So say researchers at the London School of Economics and Erasmus MC, who studied the effects of these four types of activities on the mental health... More »

Feel Free to Have a Christ-Free Christmas

Amanda Marcotte thinks the Christmas story isn't relevant anymore

(Newser) - Suppose you're a basically non-religious parent. Do you have a responsibility to tell your kids the story of Jesus this holiday season? Andre Park at Salon tried, and soon found himself awash in questions he couldn't answer: "Where's Galilee? Who's Herod? What's Myrrh?" He... More »

Across the Globe, 1 in 6 Unaffiliated With a Religion

New study sheds light on global religious practices

(Newser) - The third-largest "religious" group in the world isn't actually affiliated with a religion: A new Pew study finds one in six people across the globe don't follow any particular religion. Thus, the "unaffiliated" make up 16% of the world population, or about the same percentage as... More »

No Longer a US Majority: Protestants

One-fifth of US doesn't identify with any traditional religion

(Newser) - The US population is no longer dominated by Protestants, a Pew study finds: They account for just 48% of us. And while 79% of the US remains affiliated with a traditional religious group, nearly a fifth of American adults—and a third of those under 30—don't identify with... More »

19% of Americans Have No Religion

Proportion of 'Nones' has tripled since 1990

(Newser) - America is slowly losing its religion, according to the latest Pew Center survey. Reported membership of major religious denominations (from Baptists to Catholics to Lutherans) is flat or inching downward, while the proportion of those who list their religious affiliations as "None" has reached 19%, up from just 6%... More »

'I Hate Religion, Love Jesus' Video Poem Goes Viral

Jeff Bethke's YouTube video is a hit for Tacoma native

(Newser) - “Religion puts you in shackles, but Jesus sets you free. Religion makes you blind, but Jesus lets you see.” If you're one of the 20 million who have seen Jeff Bethke's viral video, "Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus," you've already heard... More »

Jesus Page Attracts 'Divine' Facebook Traffic

'Jesus Daily' tops Justin Bieber for weekly comments and 'Likes'

(Newser) - Move over, Justin Bieber. Jesus Christ is here. The New York Times reports that a Facebook page called Jesus Daily is generating more "Likes" and comments than Bieber's page simply by posting the words of Jesus four or five times a day. Last week it racked up 3.... More »

One Episcopal Congregation Converting to Catholicism

St. Luke's Parish-Anglican will get new name, but keep married pastor

(Newser) - Parishioners of St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Maryland arrived at services Sunday and got an unexpected sermon: Rev. Mark Lewis informed the congregation that he and other church leaders wanted the entire parish to convert to Catholicism. “We didn’t know for sure how people would react,”... More »

Faithful Flock to Jesus Theme Park

Visitors can pose for 'walking on water' photo

(Newser) - Christians seeking a more hands-on religious experience would do well to check out the Holy Land Experience in Orlando, ABC News reports. The park, which has been open for 10 years but was recently bought by Trinity Broadcasting—the largest Christian broadcaster—features interactive New Testament attractions that border on... More »

Religious Leaders Slam 'Godless' Hawking

Battle erupts over 'spontaneous creation'

(Newser) - Angry religious leaders are slamming "Godless" physicist Stephen Hawking for saying the universe likely created itself without any divine intervention. “Belief in God is not about plugging a gap in explaining how one thing relates to another within the universe," the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams tells... More »

Obama, the Christian, Prefers to Pray Privately

White House goes on the offensive

(Newser) - Unlike his predecessors, President Obama prefers to keep his expressions of religious faith private, Michael D. Shear writes in the Washington Post , recounting the president's unpublicized decision to have a prayer session with three Christian pastors on his 49th birthday. He often consults spiritual advisers but hasn't joined a church... More »

Obama Supports Mosque Near Ground Zero

President cites 'commitment to religious freedom'

(Newser) - President Obama tonight forcefully endorsed building a mosque near Ground Zero, saying the country's founding principles demand no less. "As a citizen, and as president, I believe that Muslims have the same right to practice their religion as anyone else in this country," Obama said, weighing in for... More »

2,500 Atheists Gather in Melbourne

Global Atheist Convention thought to be largest meeting of godless ever

(Newser) - If ever there was a group unafraid of a vengeful lightning bolt, it's the 2,500 atheists converging on Melbourne—likely the largest concentration of godless thinkers ever. The Global Atheist Convention says it doesn't intend to proselytize, and in fact discourages any “missionary zeal." Still, the convention... More »

14 Stories