Christianity remains the world’s largest religion and a latest survey showed that Christians in Africa, Latin America, and the United States have the highest level of commitment to their faith.
According to a Pew Research Center study, religion is most important to believers living in Africa, Latin America, and the United States. Christians in these regions “tend to pray more frequently, attend religious services more regularly.”
The United States remains an outlier among wealthy countries in terms of its relatively high levels of religious commitment. —Pew Research Center
Pew surveyed 84 countries with large Christian populations and the findings showed that in 35 of those countries, at least two-thirds of all Christians claimed that religion is very important in their lives. Most of those 35 countries are in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America, and the three exceptions are the U.S., Malaysia, and the Philippines.
More than 75% of Christians in sub-Saharan Africa gives a lot of importance to faith. The opposite is true in Western Europe where Christianity is not given much importance.
Prayer frequency was one of the criteria the researchers used in the study to measure the commitment of Christians. In Africa, at least four in five Christians in Nigeria, Liberia, Senegal, Cameroon and Chad pray regularly. The same trend was seen in Christians in Guatemala, Honduras and Paraguay.
Church attendance was also used in the study. More than 60% of Christians in Africa claimed to be regular churchgoers, those who go to church at least once a week. Christians in Latin America also share the same passion with their faith—more than two-thirds of the Christian population go to church weekly.
In the United States, 68% of the Christian population said religion is very important in their lives. In terms of praying, nearly seven-in-ten American Christians (68%) said they pray every day and 47% said they are regular churchgoers.
The U.S. remains an outlier among wealthy countries in the world. While other rich countries, including the U.S., are being secularized, the U.S. still has religion in its priorities. Experts noted that the praying habits of American adults are similar to those living in developing nations.
Some sociologists believed that the United States’ free rein on religion has promoted religious growth in the country. Different faiths have the freedom to practice their beliefs and recruit new members. Other experts theorized that the greater income inequality in the U.S. is connected to the greater importance of religion among its citizens.
Pew Research Center