Church Going Continues Decline

Billy W. Moore
Butler, Missouri

The latest Gallup Poll shows a continued decline in church going in the U.S. The following is quoted from an article by George Gallup as it appeared in the daily newspaper of Mayfield, Ky. Dec. 28, 1969.

"Princeton, N. J. Dec.27--Church going in The U. S. continues to decline from its 1958 peak, with the falling off in attendance during this 11-year period twice as great among Roman Catholics as among Protestants Following is the trend in church going in the U.S. since 1955 a peak year."


1955 49
1956 46
1957 47
1958 49
1959 47
1960 47
1961 47
1962 46
1963 46
1964 45
1965 44
1966 44
1967 45
1968 42
1969 42

Mr. Gallup also stated, "The drop in attendance over the last 11 years has come about principally among young adults of all faiths. The percentage of adults 21 to 29, who attended church in a typical week of the current year is 15 points lower than the percentage recorded for this age group in 1958."

This means that in the average community only 42 out of every 100 adults are attending church services. What a sad plight for a so-called "Christian Nation," but what an opportunity for personal evangelism. Just think of it, of the ten neighbors living around you it is likely that five of them do not attend church services anywhere!

Many will use the prevailing condition as an excuse for not doing personal evangelism, saying, "People just don't go to church like they use to." While others will be encouraged to do even more. It reminds me of the story of two men from a shoe company who went to a foreign country to sell shoes, and upon arriving in that country observed that the people did not wear shoes. One of them sent a wire back to the home office saying, "No business here; people don't wear shoes." The other sent a wire to the home office which read, "Wonderful opportunity. Set up for mass production. The people here are all barefooted!"

There is no limit to the opportunity of teaching the truth. What are you doing about it?

TRUTH MAGAZINE XIV: 24, pp. 11-12

April 23, 1970