Project 573 Investigates Growing Demographic of Nones

5 years 8 months 4 weeks ago Tuesday, May 21 2013 May 21, 2013 Tuesday, May 21, 2013 5:58:00 PM CDT May 21, 2013 in News
By: Matt Evans and Project 573 Staff

COLUMBIA - Members of a Missouri School of Journalism reporting team called Project 573 spent the last few months diving in-depth into a new and growing religious demographic of people called "Nones." According to a 2012 Pew Report on religion, one in five Americans now identifies him or herself as a None. Nones are a group of people who don't identify with a traditional religious affiliation. Some may remain spiritual and believe in a higher power, but don't affiliate with a particular religion. Others don't believe in a higher power and are atheist or agnostic.

Now in its third year, Project 573 explored the impact of this group that makes up 20 percent of America and the impact of the Nones in mid-Missouri. In a region traditionally located within the Bible Belt, the project examined how the rise of the Nones is affecting our state's politics, schools, churches and family values.

In 1906, the U.S. Census of Religious Bodies reported that more than 98 percent of congregants belonged to Christian or Catholic churches. Now, that number is around 73 percent. Though other non-Christian religions are seeing increases in affiliation, Catholicism, Protestantism and other Christian denominations are undergoing significant declines nationwide.

Debra Mason, director of the Center on Religion and the Professions at the University of Missouri, said there are a few reasons for these declining numbers. Previously, families would stay in the houses of worship and the community in which they were raised, but modern mobility has changed that.

"What has happened now is people move away," Mason said. "They try other sorts of religious institutions. They may or may not feel as though they fit there or are welcome, and so some of them choose not to belong anymore."

Religiosity also has a cyclical nature in which those in their teens and early 20s experiment with different faiths or don't attend worship services. Typically, those who follow the trend return to church after starting families. Mason said this may be changing.

"People aren't coming back to a faith tradition the way they used to with, say, the Baby Boomers," she said.

Mason said it is difficult to track trends in religion because changes in the institution happen very gradually. However, there is a consensus within the religious community that there is a declining trend in religious affiliation in general.

These numbers beg the question: who is replacing the faithful?

The Nones.

The Pew report found one-third of Americans younger than thirty are religiously unaffiliated. These Millennials, or anyone born after 1981, are altering our country's norm by defining themselves as nonreligious, irreligious, anti-religious or anti-clerical.


For a look at the full Project 573 project, go to project573onreligion.com

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Project 573 provides innovative journalism that expands awareness and broadens perspective about a localized issue.
Made up of seniors at the Missouri School of Journalism, the capstone course brings together students from the school's different sequences (print and digital news, radio/TV journalism, magazine, photojournalism, convergence journalism and strategic communication) for an experiment in cross-platform storytelling.


For a look at previous projects, go to project573.com

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Mid-Missourians have had to adjust their daily lives to the cold weather for weeks now. For some people,... More >>
2 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 4:25:00 PM CST February 18, 2019 in News
COLE COUNTY - From not answering their cell phones, to trying multiple apps and buying equipment for their landline, phone... More >>
2 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 4:16:00 PM CST February 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Officers Association on Monday endorsed Columbia Mayor Brian Treece for re-election at a press conference... More >>
2 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 3:44:00 PM CST February 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — An unidentified MU student has been diagnosed with active tuberculosis, the university confirmed in a news release on... More >>
3 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 3:11:00 PM CST February 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Police are investigating after a person was found dead inside of ABC Chinese Cuisine restaurant Monday morning. ... More >>
4 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 2:18:00 PM CST February 18, 2019 in News
BOSS, Mo. (AP) — The Dent County Sheriff's Office is investigating a murder-suicide involving two brothers. Investigators say the... More >>
6 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 12:07:00 PM CST February 18, 2019 in News
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) — Twenty-five years after Michael Davis died from injuries suffered in a brutal fraternity hazing ritual... More >>
8 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 9:40:00 AM CST February 18, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY --Efforts by lawmakers to increase literacy rates among Missouri students are on the drawing board again during the... More >>
10 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 8:23:00 AM CST February 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA – At their meeting Monday night, Columbia City Council members will discuss a bridge repair project that could cause... More >>
11 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 7:08:00 AM CST February 18, 2019 in Top Stories
(CNN) -- Police have released the names of the victims in Friday's mass shooting in Aurora, Illinois. Five people... More >>
13 hours ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 5:26:10 AM CST February 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A break from precipitation will continue through Tuesday morning and early afternoon before our next system pushes in... More >>
23 hours ago Sunday, February 17 2019 Feb 17, 2019 Sunday, February 17, 2019 6:45:00 PM CST February 17, 2019 in Weather
AURORA, Ill. (AP) — An initial background check failed to detect a felony conviction that should have barred the man... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, February 17 2019 Feb 17, 2019 Sunday, February 17, 2019 4:34:00 PM CST February 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Tiger Food Pantry is hosting "Caring Bearing Sharing" at the MU Student Center from 4 - 6 p.m.... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, February 17 2019 Feb 17, 2019 Sunday, February 17, 2019 4:08:00 PM CST February 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A fire destroyed the interior of a north Columbia home and caused a "total loss," according to Boone... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, February 17 2019 Feb 17, 2019 Sunday, February 17, 2019 12:00:00 PM CST February 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA (AP) — MU saw an uptick in reports of discrimination and harassment in the 2017-2018 school year from the... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, February 17 2019 Feb 17, 2019 Sunday, February 17, 2019 10:43:00 AM CST February 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Yoga Gives CoMo hosted its annual puppy yoga with over a hundred people in attendance at Bur Oak... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 16 2019 Feb 16, 2019 Saturday, February 16, 2019 11:00:00 PM CST February 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - One man received minor injuries after a firetruck overturned while responding to a call early Sunday morning. ... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 16 2019 Feb 16, 2019 Saturday, February 16, 2019 11:00:00 PM CST February 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - It's been 50 years since a historic moment occurred on MU's campus Community members met Saturday... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 16 2019 Feb 16, 2019 Saturday, February 16, 2019 10:41:00 PM CST February 16, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 27°
7pm 28°
8pm 27°
9pm 26°
10pm 26°